Bengaluru: For the first time, the Indian Army has selected its two women officers to train them as helicopter pilots starting this month at its Aviation Training School at Nashik in Maharashtra. 

These pilots will undergo a year-long basic as well as advanced training process before joining as pilots. As per the sources in the Indian Army, a total of 15 women officers had applied for the pilot course. However, only two managed to clear the test and medical assessment. 

They will undergo training at the Combat Army Aviation Training School, Nashik. On successful completion of training, the women officers will join flying duties by July 2022.

During the Army's annual press conference this year in January, Indian Army chief Gen MM Naravane had said that he had issued instruction a month ago to induct women in the flying branch of the Army.

"The next course will start in July and women officers will definitely be admitted into it for pilot training. After one year’s training they will be able to join frontline operations units for flying duties," the chief had said while addressing the media persons in Delhi on January 12 ahead of Army Day. 

As of now, women are allowed in air traffic control and ground duties in its aviation wing.

This year in February, the defence ministry had informed Parliament that a total of 9,118 women are currently serving the army, navy and air force. 

The Army Aviation Corps was raised in 1986 to add an air dimension to the army's capabilities. The choppers of the Army Aviation Corps involved in reconnaissance, observation, casualty evacuation, essential load drops, combat search and rescue operations. The helicopters also participate in Humanitarian Aid and Disaster Relief operations in peacetime.