NEW DELHI: Around 13.69 per cent of the workforce in the Indian Air Force (IAF), excluding its medical branch are women, the highest among all three services of the armed force, Minister of State for Defence Ajay Bhatt told the Lok Sabha.
Presenting data on the ‘participation of women in defence sector during the ongoing winter session of Parliament, Bhatt said: “Officers recruitment in the IAF is gender-neutral”.
“Women officers are inducted in all the branches and streams of IAF. Opportunities for a career in IAF service are widely publicised through print/ electronic media and special publicity drives,” the minister added.
The IAF started an experimental scheme to induct women in combat roles in 2015. It has now become permanent and is facilitating gender-neutral employment in combat roles.
The minister further informed the House that women comprise six per cent of the Indian Navy’s workforce. The process started in 1991. Since then the Indian Navy has gradually opened all branches to women officers including induction through NDA. Women are also being recruited as sailors for the first time under the Agnipath Scheme. Twenty per cent of the sailor positions have been reserved for them.
The female workforce percentage in the Indian Army was just 3.97, the lowest among the three armed services. However, women account for 21.21 per cent of the officers in the Army’s corps account medical and dental corps.
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