In a first, woman officer gets operationally deployed at the forbidding Siachen Glacier

Source: The post is based on the article “In a first, woman officer gets operationally deployed at the forbidding Siachen Glacier” published in TOI on 3rd January 2023

What is the News?

Captain Shiva Chauhan has become the first woman army officer to get operationally deployed on the Siachen Glacier, the world’s highest battlefield.

In another major development, 244 women officers from “combat support arms” in the Army will be considered for the rank of Colonel (selection grade) for the first time in a special promotion board.

What has been the scenario of women’s participation in India’s Armed forces?

Historical Background: The first time women joined the Indian Armed Forces was back in 1888 when the Indian Military Nursing Service was created. 

– Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose’s Azad Hind Fauj,  had an exclusive women’s combat regiment named Rani of Jhansi Regiment. This regiment fought on the battlefront against the Imperial Japanese Army in erstwhile Burma.

Women in the Armed Forces: Indian Army, Air Force and Navy began inducting women as short-service commission (SSC) officers in 1992. This was the first time when women were allowed to join the military outside the medical stream. 

One of the turning points for women in the military came in 2015 when the Indian Air Force decided to induct them into the fighter stream. 

In 2020, the Supreme Court(SC) ordered the central government to grant permanent commission (PC) to women officers in the Army’s non-combat support units on par with their male counterparts. 

In March 2021, the Indian Navy deployed four women officers on warships after a gap of 23 years. 

Two months later in May 2021, the Indian Army got its first batch of 83 women soldiers, in the Corps of Military Police. However, women are still not allowed in combat arms like Infantry and Armored Corps.

Increase in the representation of women in the armed forces: The number of women in the Indian armed forces has increased almost threefold over the last few years.

According to Government data, the Indian Navy has the highest number of women in its workforce among the three services at 6.5%. 

And, the percentage of women in the Army and the Indian Air Force is 0.56% and 1.08% respectively.

Print Friendly and PDF