With an official announcement coming from Indian Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, women in Indian Airforce did get wings. To be able to fly as a fighter pilot has been one long cherished dream of every women in blue and just when it came out to be true, steps have been taken back.
With their commissioning in June at the prestigious Airforce Academy, Dundigal in Hyderabad, India couldn’t be more proud of the flight these women will now be taking but according to sources, the batch of women pilots have chosen Transport aircrafts and helicopters instead of fighter planes.
Of the four pilot cadets being trained right now, none has opted for the tough call.
The IAF Chief Arup Raha,who himself has flown MIG and HAL was hoping to get women fighters on board but the voluntary call has set a dismal start to the revolutionary decision of the force. Being the first to bring the breakthrough, IAF surely would be disappointed.
The choice of stream is a voluntary one and the women pilots have chosen the safer Transport and Choppers over the Fighter aircrafts which includes flying in war zones. Often quoting safety concerns, women were omitted from joining this band, being restricted to streams like Logistics, Administration, Education and Technical. While Indian Army and Navy are still sticking to it, Airforce had opened the cockpits for its lady officers in January.