Meet Squadron Leader Manisha Padhi, India's First Woman Aide-De-Camp

Squadron Leader Manisha Padhi, a distinguished 2015 batch Indian Air Force (IAF) officer, has achieved a significant milestone by being appointed as India's first woman Aide-de-Camp (ADC). Read more about her journey in the force.

Oshi Saxena
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Manisha Padhi

Image Credits : DIPR/Mizoram

In a historic moment for India, Squadron Leader Manisha Padhi, a distinguished 2015 batch officer of the Indian Air Force (IAF), has scripted history by becoming India's first woman to ascend to the prestigious post of Aide-de-Camp (ADC). The momentous appointment, officiated by Mizoram Governor Hari Babu Kambhampati on November 29, 2023, in the capital of Mizoram, marks a significant stride towards gender inclusivity and recognition of women's capabilities in the highest echelons of the Indian Armed Forces.


Amidst a brief yet impactful ceremony at the Raj Bhawan in Aizawl, Mizoram, Squadron Leader Manisha Padhi assumed her role as the ADC from the armed forces. This momentous occasion reflects not only the individual accomplishments of Squadron Leader Padhi but also the progressive stride towards gender inclusivity within the Indian Armed Forces.

The Mizoram Governor's office, in an official release, proudly declared, "Squadron Leader Manisha Padhi has been appointed as Aide-de-Camp (ADC) to the Governor of Mizoram. Squadron Leader Manisha is India's first woman Indian Armed Forces officer to be appointed as Aide-de-Camp (ADC) to the Governor of the country."

Squadron Leader Padhi: A Trailblazer's Journey

Squadron Leader Padhi, before assuming her groundbreaking post, had an illustrious career with postings at Air Force stations in Bidar, Pune, and Bhatinda. Her journey symbolizes dedication, skill, and a commitment to serving the nation.

The formal joining of Squadron Leader Padhi to her post on November 29 was marked by an introduction to the officers and staff of the Raj Bhavan at Aizawl. This symbolic gesture not only acknowledges her new role but also emphasizes the significance of her appointment in the eyes of the state.

Understanding the Role of Aide-de-Camp


In India, the title of Aide-de-Camp is a mark of honour bestowed upon distinguished officers. Both current and former aides-de-camp have conferred the post-nominal letter ADC, signifying their role in supporting and assisting high-ranking officials.

Traditionally, service chiefs, including those of the Army, Navy, and Air Staff, have aides-de-camp, with the President having a designated team of five (three from the Army and one each from the Navy and the Air Force). Additionally, there is an honorary aide-de-camp from the Territorial Army, contributing to the ceremonial and functional aspects of this prestigious role.

A Momentous Leap Towards Inclusivity

Squadron Leader Manisha Padhi's appointment is not only a personal achievement but also a significant stride towards breaking gender barriers within the armed forces. Her dedication and excellence serve as an inspiration for aspiring female officers, highlighting the limitless possibilities within the military domain.

In celebrating this historic moment, we acknowledge the importance of diversity and the continual efforts towards fostering an environment of equal opportunities within our armed forces.

As  Squadron Leader Manisha Padhi takes on her role as India's first woman Aide-de-Camp, we witness the breaking down of traditional norms and the ushering in of a new era. Her appointment is a stepping stone in the evolving landscape of the Indian Armed Forces, where merit and capability transcend gender boundaries.

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