New Delhi, Dec 14: Defence Minister A K Anthony said on Monday, Dec 14 that defence forces will not induct women into combat duties, which also applies to women fighter pilots.
Acknowledging the competency of women in defence areas, Anthony told the House that the decision was made based on the study conducted by Headquarters Integrated Defence Staff in 2006.
"A study carried out by Headquarters Integrated Defence Staff in 2006 on all aspects of employment of women officers in the armed forces recommended exclusion of women officers from close combat roles," Antony said.
However, Anthony said that the decision was not final and they are working towards increasing the possibility of women to join combat duties.
Anthony was responding to BJP Leader Sushma Swaraj question on employment of women officers for special women battalion.
Echoing Anthony's decision, Minister of State for Defence Pallam Raju, said that the government is expanding streams to take in more women employees.
"Most of the women are meeting the benchmarks. It is only because streams are limited and we are making efforts to expand them from time to time," Raju said in response to Congress member, Manish Tiwari's question on low percentage of women employees in defence force.