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The combat sartorialist

entertainment Updated: Oct 15, 2010 14:23 IST
Mayank Austen Soofi
Mayank Austen Soofi
Hindustan Times
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We saw these young women in Connaught Place. In army boots, fatigues and caps, they still looked slender and delicate. The cargo pockets on their khaki trousers and the shoulder lapels on their shirts were commando-like. A ball-point pen was tucked into their shoulder pocket. Their packed ammunition belt and rolled sleeves gave them a battlefield zest.

The military outfit is a global hot fashion trend, but these armed women are not ruled by Anna Wintour’s dictates. The fresh batch of the first all-women battalion of north-east India’s Nagaland Police, they were in Delhi to provide special security to the 2010 Commonwealth Games.

Aged between 18 and 25, these women are trained to handle weapons such as .303 rifles, 9-mm pistols and light machine guns. With semi-automated rifle in their arms, they kept an eye on anything that seemed suspicious. Delhiites looked at these armed women with awe.

In Scindia House, Outer Circle, when we requested one of them to pose for the camera, she refused. We didn’t feel snubbed. Her voice was soft, her smile was sweet and the refusal was gentle. She was polite, but we knew that if there were to be a terror attack, we’d be safe.