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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar announced on Saturday that women will not be recruited for any combat operations in armed forces due to the fear of their safety. However they would be encouraged to join other operational areas of their choices.

Talking about the heinous possibilities of torture they might suffer, if held captive by the counter forces, he added that, “No. Think of what can happen if a woman is taken as a prisoner in combat operation.”

“Barring combat role, we are increasing the participation of women in every other activity of the armed forces in a phased manner,” he told reporters on the sidelines of the passing out parade of the 128th course at the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla.

Addressing the issue of the shortage of officers in the defence forces, Parrikar said, “The problem is not as severe as being perceived by the media or in general.”

“Each year, around 800 to 1,000 officers are retiring from the services. The present shortfall of 49,000 officers appears mainly on account of the requirement of the Mountain Brigade, which is yet to be established completely. Otherwise, the (demand-supply) gap has been bridged to some extent,” he added.

According to the information provided by him, three premier institutes, Air, Water and Land forces, will be enhancing the number of candidates from existing 1950 to 2400 in next two years.

Addressing the cadets during the ceremony, he emphasised on the need to stay mentally aware about the changes around the world, including technological advancement and changing strategies of warfare.


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