29 IAF officers sought retirement in last 2 years | delhi | Hindustan Times
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29 IAF officers sought retirement in last 2 years

delhi Updated: Aug 12, 2013 20:41 IST

Twenty-nine air force officers have sought voluntary retirement, citing less promotional avenues in the last two years.



"29 officers have applied for voluntary retirement citing reason of less promotional avenues and 20 of the applications have been approved," defence minister AK Antony said in written reply to a query.



He said 21 such applications were received in 2012 while eight were made in 2013 of which 13 and seven were approved respectively.



The IAF has been facing a shortage of officers in the recent past and has lesser number of pilots than its sanctioned strength.



To a query on women officers in the three armed forces, the defence minister said as per the existing promotion policy in the armed forces, women officers are considered for promotion based on the same criteria as applicable to their male counterparts.



To a query on the strategic partnership with Afghanistan, the minister said an agreement in this regard was signed on October 4, 2011 providing for security cooperation between the two countries.



"Under the agreement, India has agreed to assist, as mutually determined, in the training, and capacity building programmes for Afghan National Security Forces," he said.



Antony said India's assistance to Afghanistan in the defence sector is based on the specific request from the Afghan government.



To a query on the building of a civilian indigenous aircraft, the defence minister said, "It has been decided that a high-level steering group under chairman, National Manufacturing Competitiveness Council would be constituted to work out modalities of the programme on civilian aircraft manufacture."