In A First, Girls Can Now Take Admission In Sainik Schools
In an attempt to reinforce gender equality in the armed forces, Defense Minister Rajnath Singh has given a nod to the admission of girls in Sainik schools from 2021-2022 academic session.
This happened when the Sainik School in Lucknow, Uttar-Pradesh opened its doors for girls, dropping its age-long tag of all-boys school on Friday. The school admitted 15 girl cadets for the first time in 57 years.
Principal Col Amit Chatterjee said the girl cadets who have “a dream to join the country’s armed forces, formerly attended the first lesson.”
However, the girls are admitted from class 9th as against the norm of admitting boys from class 7th. The authorities feel that adolescent girls will be more mature and capable enough to cope with the ‘Sainik’ environment.
This came following the success of a pilot project that was started two years ago in Mizoram. Lucknow’s Sainik school admitted 15 girl students earlier this year.
According to a press release, Home Minister has directed the authorities to ensure the availability of necessary infrastructure and adequate women staff to aid the girl students in the Sainik schools.
“The decision is in line with the objective of the government towards greater inclusiveness, gender equality, enabling greater participation of women in armed forces and strengthening the motto of ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao’, propagated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi,” a statement said.
The Sainik schools are a system of schools in India established and managed by the Sainik Schools Society under Ministry of Defence. 26 Sainik schools located across India will now welcome girls to enter the National Defence Academy which is a training ground for all three services.
Earlier, Army Chief General Bipin Rawat had said though the authorities were not open to women in combat roles, but were in the process of recruiting and training the first batch of women for the military police.