IAF officer Anjali Singh becomes India’s first woman defence attaché
Wing Commander Anjali Singh has become the first woman in the country’s military history to be posted in any Indian mission abroad, with the Indian Air Force sending her to Moscow as a deputy air attaché.
She took charge of her new assignment on September 10, two IAF officials said. The 41-year-old officer is an aeronautical engineer who served with fighter squadrons during her 17-year military career, said an official.
Until now, only male officers from the three services were appointed as military attaches in overseas Indian missions. The change came about during Nirmala Sitharam’s tenure as defence minister when she backed the proposal to give military women more global exposure. “Indian women have made their mark overseas since the time Chonira Belliappa Muthamma became first Indian woman diplomat decades ago. She made her mark and so shall Wing Commander Anjali Singh. It’s a march forward…to Russia, with love,” said Wing Commander Anupama Joshi, one of the first women to join the air force in 1993.
The army and the navy will also appoint women officers as defence attaches in the near future depending on the candidates meeting the requirement.
“Wing Commander Anjali Singh joined @IndEmbMoscow on 10th Sep as the Deputy Air Attache. She enjoys the distinction of being the first female Indian Armed Forces Officer to be posted as a military diplomat in any of the Indian missions abroad,” the Indian embassy in Moscow tweeted.
Singh hails from Bihar. She is married and has an eight-year-old son. Before moving to Moscow, she was posted in Jodhpur.