इंडियन आवाज़     19 May 2024 01:10:31      انڈین آواز

Military has come long way in gender integration, say women trendsetters s at HTLS

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Women officers, Colonel Neha Singh, Group Captain Shaliza Dhami and Lieutenant Commander Annu Prakash during a session at the HT Leadership Summit in New Delhi on Saturday. (HT Photo)


Women trendsetters in the army, air force and navy have observed that the armed forces have come a long way in advancing gender integration and the raft of new opportunities opened to female soldiers will increase their representation in the military in the coming years.

Speaking at the 21st HT Leadership Summit, the women officers said on Saturday that old mindsets had been rewired and the gender gap bridged significantly since the three services started inducting women more than three decades ago. They hoped that women would fill more roles in the future, including those related to combat.

The officers, Colonel Neha Singh, Group Captain Shaliza Dhami and Lieutenant Commander Annu Prakash disagreed with the widely held belief that it would be disastrous if women were taken as prisoners of war (PoW), arguing that they would deal with the situation in the same way as their male counterparts would.

Soldiers are trained to perform their duties and gender no longer counts, all three concurred.

Singh is one of the first women officers in the army in a command role. She is the commanding officer of an air defence unit in Rajasthan near the Indo-Pak border. Dhami, a helicopter pilot, is the first woman in the Indian Air Force in a command role and is heading a missile squadron near the Indo-Pak border. And Prakash, a naval aviator, is one of the first women officers in the navy to serve onboard a frontline warship INS Kochi.

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