Army gets first woman combat aviator


New Delhi: Capt. Abhilasha Barak on Wednesday became the first woman officer to join the Army Aviation Corps as a “combat aviator” after she successfully completed the combat aviation course. She was awarded the coveted “wings” along with 36 Army pilots by the director-general and colonel commandant of Army Aviation at a valedictory ceremony at the Combat Army Aviation Training School in Nashik.

Capt. Abhilasha Barak, who hails from Haryana, was commissioned in the Army Air Defence Corps in September 2018. She is daughter of Col. S. Om Singh (Retd). Capt. Abhilasha has done a number of professional military courses before joining the Army Aviation Corps.


Till now, women officers were assigned only ground duties in the Army Aviation Corps. However, women officers in the Indian Air Force and the Indian Navy already fly helicopters.

In 2021, then Army Chief Gen. M.M. Naravane had cleared the proposal to allow women officers to opt for the Army Aviation Corps.

The Army Aviation Corps is a component of the Indian Army which was formed on November 1, 1986. It is headed by a lieutenant-general rank officer who is known as director-general of Army Aviation. Over the years, the corps has expanded exponentially with the addition of new units and state-of-the-art equipment, including Cheetah Dhruv, Rudra, LCH and remotely piloted aircraft. With the motto “Swift and Sure”, the youngest corps of the Indian Army is set to further grow in its tactical importance in the battlefield to take further its role as a force multiplier.



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