The Indian Navy announced the selection of two women officers as observer in the helicopter stream. Lieutenant Kumundini Tyagi and Sub Lieutenant Riti Singh will be the first women officers in the Indian Navy who would operate from warships.
Earlier, till 1992, women officers were appointed in the Navy only in the medical stream from the Armed Forces Medical Service. From 1992, The Indian Navy started to appoint women in select branches, begin with a special entry scheme and later through the Short Service Commission. Now women officers can join the Navy in Air Traffic control, Observers, Law, Logistics, Education, Naval Architecture, Pilots in Maritime Reconnaissance Stream, and the Naval Armament Inspectorate. As in the Army and Airforce, women officers are appointed as Commissioner officers and not in other ranks.
Till now, women were appointed as observers for fixed wing aircraft that take off and land ashore. Entry in the helicopter stream which shows the women officers can now be deployed on the frontline warship from which helicopter can operate.
Women officers have expressed the hope that in future women being deployed in the most challenging role including submarines. Last year, the Indian Navy also selected its first lady officer for an international posting as a Defence Attache (to Moscow), whose area of expertise is in the construction of warships and their maintenance.