Women Agniveer Vayu soldiers will participate in the Indian Air Force contingent for the Republic Day parade this year, said an Indian Air Force official. “Proud to wear the blues. Proud to march together. Proud to be a part of Republic Day 2024.” IAF posted on X.
Proud to don the Blues.
Proud to march together.
— Indian Air Force (@IAF_MCC) January 8, 2024
The Agnipath scheme, implemented in September 2022, provides four years of service into the Armed Forces of the country, after which those selected for enrolment in the Armed Forces as regular cadre, would be required to serve for a further engagement period of minimum 15 years.
Meanwhile, two all-women contingents of the Defence forces are scheduled to march at the Republic Day parade this year. “One contingent, including 144 personnel, would have all women soldiers, including 60 from the Army and the remaining from the Indian Air Force and Indian Navy,” defence officials said here.
The contingent would include women Agniveer soldiers who would be from the Navy and Air Force. Another all-women contingent would be from the Directorate General of the Armed Forces Medical Services which will include nurses of the military nursing services and they would be led by women doctors at the parade.
French President Emmanuel Macron will be the chief guest at the Republic Day celebrations on January 26. Notably, this is the sixth time a French leader will be the chief guest at Republic Day celebrations here in the national capital.
Promotion of Nari Shakti or strengthening women’s power in the defence forces has been one of the key focus areas of the Narendra Modi-led government at the centre.
All three forces have opened up multiple avenues for women soldiers and officers in the defence forces. While the Indian Air Force has allowed women as fighter pilots, the Navy has given the command of its warship for the first time to a lady officer.
The Indian Army has also allowed the entry of women officers and soldiers into almost all of its arms and services. The Force is also looking at the possibility of allowing women in other remaining arms and branches too.
(with inputs from ANI)