While the Indian army will get its first batch of women soldiers in the rank-and-file in early May, a visit to the CMP Centre and School, where they are training at present revealed they are being pushed as hard as their male counterparts and that their recruitment has brought about a sea change at the centre so far as gender sensitisation is concerned.
And, of the 100 cadets who’ll pass out in May, most are from Uttar Pradesh and Haryana, followed by Karnataka. According to Lt Col Julee, the training officer, 27 of the 100 women are from UP, 26 from Haryana, eight from Karnataka, six from Kerala, two each from Himachal Pradesh and the northeastern states and one each from Delhi, Punjab and Rajasthan. The remaining 26 are from across the states.
Brigadier C Dayalan, commandant, CMP Centre and School, said: “These girls who had come, initially with a lot of inhibitions and deficiencies have been transformed into professional soldiers thanks to their own hard work, grit and determination they have, the zeal and the passion. Needless to say that the instructors and the trainers have worked really hard with them and that’s why they turned out to be what they are today.”
Multiple cadets that TOI interacted with had multiple reasons for choosing to be sepoys in the army, but the one common thing, as would be expected of them, was that they are proud to serve the nation.