On the occasion of International Women’s Day, Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha announced that India will get its first batch of female fighter pilots later this year. He said the graduation ceremony of three women trainees, who are in the second phase of their training, is scheduled for June 18. Raha added that they will then be sent for advanced jet training and later be part of regular squads.

Last year, the Centre had approved their induction in combat roles. “I thank the defence minister for having approved IAF’s proposal to induct women as fighter pilots,” Raha said while speaking at a seminar on women in uniform at the New Delhi Army Medical Corps. The air marshal stressed that the AMC was the first to support giving women the opportunity to serve in the defence sector.