SHILLONG, April 26 - The Meghalaya capital will be part of a historic event in which women will be inducted into the Indian Army as soldiers for the first time since Independence.
Shillong has been identified as one of the five centres in the country for the proposed recruitment rallies in this regard. It will thereby etch its name in the military log books after the Indian Government decided to do away with an archaic rule barring women in the role of soldiers in the Indian Army.
The Government has now allowed women as soldiers (general duty) in the Indian Army and the recruitment process has begun. The decision comes after women have been inducted as fighter pilots in the Indian Air Force.
Although women will not be enrolled for any combat role in the Indian Army at the moment, it is nonetheless a milestone for them.
In a recently released advertisement, the Indian Army has called for �unmarried� female candidates for 100 posts of soldier. These recruits will constitute the first women military police.
�The Government last year announced that women would be inducted as soldiers or PBOR (personnel below officer rank) in the military police from 2019 onwards,� Wing Commander Ratnakar Singh, Defence Public Relations Officer, told The Assam Tribune.
He added induction of approximately 800 women in the military police would take place over the years with a yearly intake of 50 personnel per year, as has been decided by the Government.
However, since the process of recruiting women as soldiers has taken place after several hurdles and a sustained decision-making process, 100 female candidates will be inducted in the first batch, instead of 50.
The online registration process for examination began on Thursday. Recruitment rallies will be conducted at Ambala, Lucknow, Jabalpur and Belgaum, apart from Shillong.
Aspirants born between October 1998 and April 2002 are eligible to register for the recruitment process. There are other qualitative requirements which need to be fulfilled to be eligible for qualification.
There will be a written as well as a physical test for induction. The physical test will feature a time-bound 1.6 km race, high jump (3 feet) and long jump (10 feet).
�Any female candidate, if found to be pregnant, shall be disqualified and her candidature rejected. A candidate should not have conceived at the time of reporting or till conclusion of training� Candidates must undertake not to marry until they complete the full training at the Corps of Military Police Centre and School, Bengaluru,� the advertisement said.