Indian Air Force (IAF)
The Indian Air Force (IAF) the youngest of the three defence services, was commissioned on October 8, 1932, with four single-propeller engine Wapiti aircrafts, six pilot officers, two airmen and 19 Hawai Sepoys. The first Indian Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Subroto Mukherjee one of the founding members of the Air Force took over on 1st April 1954. Today, the IAF is the fourth largest Airforce in the world with its forty-five squadron strength and some of the most sophisticated fighter air crafts like Mirage 2000, MIG 29, MIG 27, Jaguar, MIG 25, MIG 23 and MIG 21. The transport wing has the huge IL 76 (Gajraj), AN 32 and other smaller aircrafts. Armed Forces offer excellent career opportunities to the adventurous young candidates. Its a career that offers immense facilities, a privileged lifestyle and of course, honour in serving the country. The major activity of the air force is that of flying combat air crafts and helicopters. Other activities include technical work such as aeronautical engineering, electronics, and computer engineering, as well as administrative, financial and planning duties. One can join the Air Force either as an Officer or Airman. The officer cadre provides opportunities for men having 10+2 (Intermediate), graduate, engineering and postgraduate degrees, in their three different branches. Women who are graduates, engineers and post graduates can join as an Officer in the Air force. The officers will be posted either as a Pilot, or a Navigator, or a Technical or a Ground Duty officer in any one of the Air Force bases. Women have opportunities only in the Officer cadre of the Air force. In the Airmen cadre, there are opportunities even for class tenth pass (Matriculate) and below candidates, 10+2 (Intermediate), Diploma, graduates, postgraduates etc in their technical and non-technical trade fields. One can join the Air Force as an Officer in either one of the three branches, the Flying, Technical or the Ground branch. The officer cadre provides opportunities for men with 10+2 /Intermediate (only in the flying branch), graduates ( all three branches), engineers (all three branches) and postgraduates (all branches except the Flying branch). Women who are graduates, engineers and post graduates can join as an Officer in the Air force. Candidates short-listed after the initial selection procedure, go through a rigorous training regimen at one of the Air Force training establishments. Thereafter, they are commissioned as officers and posted either as a Pilot or a Navigator, or a Technical or a Ground Duty officer at any of the Air Force Stations. Only the Officer cadre of the Air force provide opportunities for women. But they will be appointed only on 'Short Service Commission' i.e for a term of 10 years which you can extend up to 10 more years depending on your conduct or retire at the age of 40 whichever comes first. Only men will be granted 'Permanent Commission' from the Indian Air Force i.e will be accepted in service, for life. They can also opt for 'Short Service Commission'. The Flying branch includes Fighter pilots who fly combat or fighter planes carrying ammunition and missiles; Transport pilots who fly planes which carry men and materials, and Helicopter pilots who provide air support to a moving army, or are used for para-dropping men and supplies. This branch also includes navigators who fly along with the pilot and guide the aircraft by using the latest avionic equipment. The Technical branch consists of all the engineering sections which are responsible for the engineering equipment and weapons systems of the air force. Aeronautical engineers in the mechanical department ensure the proper maintenance of all aircraft; while those in the electronics department handle the electronic and communication equipment in aircraft. The Ground Duties Branch includes all the departments that provide logistical, meteorological, educational and administrative support to the flying and technical branches. This includes the Air Traffic Control Officer who provides control and advisory services to enable the pilot to conduct flights in total safety. The Fighter Controller monitors the skies for any potential threat and selects the appropriate air defence system using modern electronic equipment to intercept these threats. The logistics Officer is responsible for provisioning the aircraft with spares, fuel, armaments and so on, while the meteorological branch officers are engaged in conducting scientific research on the prevailing weather and atmospheric conditions. There are also other branches such as administration, education and accounts. Eligibility The three branches of the Air force are Flying, Ground duty and Technical branch. The officer cadre provides opportunities for men with 10+2 / Intermediate (only in the Flying branch), graduates (all three branches), engineers (all three branches) and postgraduates (all branches except the Flying branch) in the various positions. Women with graduate (all three branches), engineering (all three branches) and post graduate degrees (all branches except the Flying branch) have openings as an Officer in the Air force. The career options and eligibility for the candidates having different educational qualifications for the Officer Cadre in the different branches of the Air force are given in the following links. • Intermediate (10+2) • Graduate • Post Graduate • Engineers Physical Standards Physical fitness is one of the most important prerequisites for joining the Air Force. Irrespective of the branch you are applying for, you must fulfill some basic physical standards. General physical requirements common for all candidates. • You must be in good physical and mental health and free from any disease/ disability, which is likely to interfere with efficient performance of duties. There should be no evidence of weak constitution, bodily defects or overweight. • The height and weight standards for men and women differ. • Your chest should be well developed. The minimum range of expansion after full inspiration should be 5 cm. • There should be no disease of bones and joints of the body. • You should be free of any past history of mental breakdown or fits. • Your hearing should be normal without any evidence of present or past disease of the ear, nose and throat. • There should be no sign of functional or organic disease of the heart and blood vessels. Your blood pressure should also be normal. • The muscles of the abdomen should be well developed without any enlargement of the liver or spleen. Any evidence of disease of internal organs of the abdomen can be a cause for rejection. • An un-operated hernia can make you unfit for selection. If operated, this should have been done at least six months prior to the present examination and healing should be complete without any potential for recurrence. • There should be no hydrocele, varicocele or piles. If operated for hydrocele and/or varicocele, this should have been done at least six months prior to the present examination and healing should be complete without any recurrence. • Urine examination will be done and any abnormality, if detected, can be a cause for rejection. • Any disease of the skin, which is likely to cause disability or disfigurement, will also be a cause for rejection. • Vision will be tested. You must have good binocular vision. In case you have undergone or are detected to have undergone Radial Keratotomy, or any other procedure to improve the visual acuity, you will be permanently rejected. • You should have sufficient number of natural and sound teeth. A minimum of 14 dental points will be acceptable. When 32 teeth are present, the total dental points are 22. You should not be suffering from severe pyorrhoea. Conditions pertaining to women that will entail rejection for all Air Force Duties: • Acute or chronic pelvic infection • Severe menorrhagia • Severe dysmenorrhea • Complete prolapse of uterus • Pregnancy/ Amenorrhea • Any other gynaecological condition, if so considered by the specialist.