Breaking the gender barrier, the Indian Army is all pumped up to start recruiting women for several combat positions in its cadres. Speaking about the same Army Chief General Bipin Rawat said that the process to allow women in combat roles which is currently the domain of men, is moving rapidly and initially women will be recruited for positions in military police.
Giving out further details of the move, Rawat said, “I am looking at women coming as jawans. I am going to start it soon. Firstly, we will start with women as military police jawans.” As off now, only a few countries have allowed women in such aggressive combat domains. Here is all you need to know about role of women in Army, Navy and Air Force:
i) Currently, women are allowed in Indian Army in some selective areas including medical, legal, educational, signals and engineering wings. Combat roles are kept off limit for women due to the operational concerns and logistical issues.
ii) The Army Chief is affirmative about recruiting women as jawans and has picked up the proposal with the central government. Speaking to PTI, he said, “We have already started the process and women will now have an opportunity to show their grit and strength in taking up challenges in combat roles and shattering the glass ceiling.
iii) As off now Army of only a few countries including Germany, Canada, the US, Britain, Denmark, Australia, Finland, Sweden, Israel and Norway allow women in combat roles.
iv) The roles of military police include policing the cantonments and other army establishments, put a check on violations of rules and regulations by soldiers, maintaining the movement and logistics of army troops during both peace and war, handling prisoners acquired during wars and extending support to civil police force whenever required.
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v) In a similar move last year by the Indian Air Force, three women were inducted as fighter pilots. The recruitment took place within a year after the government decided to open the fighter stream for women on an experimental basis. A final call on having women as fighter pilots will be taken by the senior officials after evaluating the performance of the three female fighter pilots – Avani Chaturvedi, Bhawana Kanth and Mohana Singh who are now part of IAF’s fighter squadron.
vi) Similarly, Indian Naval Force is currently analysing on the policy of having women onboard the ships. As off now, the Navy allows women in various other segments including in legal, logistics, naval architecture and engineering departments.