Country to have its second ever woman air vice marshal | india | Hindustan Times
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Country to have its second ever woman air vice marshal

india Updated: May 05, 2011 21:25 IST
Jyotsna Jalali

With air cmde Dr Uma Raju getting approved for the next rank, the country is all set to have second ever woman to hold the rank of air vice marshal. The first ever woman to hold this rank was air vice marshal P Bandhopadhyaya in 2002.

Also the Indian Air Force across the country has seen an increase in the number of women joining the force.

Confirming the development air cmde Dr Uma Raju while talking to the Hindustan Times from Hyderabad said, "I have been approved for the next rank and it feels great. With all formalities being completed I will be picking up a rank in about a month."

Raju has also been the first woman in the history of 7 Air Force hospital in Kanpur to command it. Before this she was a consultant at Command hospital Banaglore. Raju believes that being efficient and focused always pays in life and for her it was a planned deal, as she always wanted to join the forces.

Though being a single woman she says that never faced gender bias. "It is a very clean environment and if you have potential nothing can stop you. I have never ever been judged because of my gender or have faced any bias because of the same," says Uma Raju.

She gives credit to her family in Hyderabad for supporting her throughout. One message she wants to give out to aspiring women wanting to join the forces is that if, 'one is determined nothing can come in its way'.

Uma Raju initially joined the Indian Army and was commissioned in the army medical corps on Feb 27, 1977. An MD in paediatrics from AFMC, Pune, Raju acquired her speciality in neonatology from Dr MGR Medical University, Chennai in 1994. She was also awarded Visiting Fellowship of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, UK and held various important appointments in her field of specialty throughout her service career.

Meanwhile if the figures of provided by the public relation department of the Indian Airforce head quarters are to be believed that women opting for the service have gone up.

A spokes person of the Indian Air Force from Delhi stated that this year 890 women have joined the forces across the country and the same is considerably higher than what is was in previous years. As far as the women pilots are concerned there has been an increase of about 10%.

Earlier it was only in the health sector of the air forces that women were making their mark, but gradually they have started moving to the main stream. Meanwhile the maximum doctors in the Indian Air force are woman doctors across the country.