Now a new verdict is given to the women on their way of working .On 17th November, a top Indian Air Force Official said women may become fighter pilots provided they do not become a mother till a certain age. For defending his statement the official said that after spending 1.16crore on a fighter pilot when a women pilot gets pregnant a woman pilot has to take pregnancy leave for around 10 months, which is a huge disruption to IAF and for her.
After 13-14 years of service, investments made on fighter pilots are actually recovered by the government, women fighter pilots should be allowed to have kids only after putting in 13-14 years in IAF.”Anyone can fly a fighter. But the issue is that after spending so much and then not being able to utilize women operationally would not be a prudent thing,” said Air Marshal Barbora.
Apparently sensing that such a move could spark a controversy, Barbora said it was not a final move as such a condition may be brought in. Now, women in the age group of 21-23 years are inducted into the flying branch and may be allowed to start family after crossing the 35-37 years age bracket.
As the women are already flying helicopters and transport aircraft in IAF, things may gradually evolve to a level when they are also allowed to fly fighters in the future. But there are no such concrete plans as of now.
India is socio-economically and culturally different. Things have to be looked through these perspectives also,” the air chief said. Unlike other countries, in India women were first taken into short-service commission in the early 1990s, even though they have been in armed forces for about 80 years in medical and nursing course. In the Air Force, women are in ground duties and fly transport aircraft. There are 793 women in the IAF as on date.