IAF to have women fighter pilots; no offsprings condition applies | india | Hindustan Times
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IAF to have women fighter pilots; no offsprings condition applies

"In a few years time, we might see this change (women getting inducted as fighter pilots) coming in with certain pre-conditions that till this age we request you to be happy, be married, but no offsprings," IAF Vice Chief Air Marshal PK Barbora said.

india Updated: Nov 17, 2009 20:22 IST

The Indian Air Force on Tuesday said it was planning to have women fighter pilots in future, but they will be inducted with a pre-condition of not bearing children till a certain age.

"In a few years time, we might see this change (women getting inducted as fighter pilots) coming in with certain pre-conditions that till this age we request you to be happy, be married, but no offsprings," IAF Vice Chief Air Marshal PK Barbora told reporters in New Delhi.

"After 13-14 years of service, investments made on fighter pilots are actually recovered by the government," he said in an indication that women fighter pilots will be allowed to have kids only after putting in 13-14 years in IAF.

Now, women in the age group of 21-23 years are inducted into the flying branch and may be allowed to start family after crossing the 35-37 years age bracket.

The IAF Vice-Chief said if a woman pilot has to take pregnancy leave, she will be off-flying for around 10 months, which will not be fruitful for both her and the Service.

Citing reasons for Services not inducting women into combat arms, Barbora said, the armed forces "feel that it is not right to have a lady or a woman exposed to a conflict where she can be a prisoner of war."

"Secondly, psychologically, are we fit? another factor," he added.