In 2016, the IAF is attracting more women in comparison with army and navy

Women in IAF

More women seem to be gravitating towards the Air Force, as compared to the Army and Navy in India. As reported by TOI, it has been found that the rate of women joining the Army and Naval Forces is in fact on a downslide as compared to the IAF.

Also read: After women fighter pilots, Manohar Parrikar’s next agenda: An all-woman army batallion

It was last year that induction of women as fighter pilots was given a go-ahead by the defence ministry, post which three women have been inducted into that wing this year. They will pass out finally next year. This seems to have raised the interest of women in joining the IAF in combat roles. As per TOI, in 2016 of the 142 women who have shown interest in becoming a part of the armed forces, a whopping 60% or 85 women want to join IAF, while 37 wanted to join the army and only 20 opted for the Navy.

“The IAF has managed to draw more women, not just because of the experimental combat role offer. The IAF has always had more women than the Army and Navy. That’s because they got opportunities to fly aircraft even if it wasn’t fighters until now,” said a retired air marshal to TOI.

Also watch: Flying high: Meet India’s first batch of female fighter pilots

Reportedly, the increase in women opting for the IAF over the Army and Navy has been consistent over the last four years. 2015 saw 223 women enrolled in IAF while 72 in army and only 35 in navy. However, the overall numbers are falling since 2011, when in total 337 women enrolled in the armed forces, while last year in 2015 when the number fell to 330. Time to introduce combat roles for women in Army and Navy as well, you think?

Picture credit- NDTV