Punjab, known as a provider and protector for the country, has an illustrious and rich history of valiant warriors marked with heroic feats. Punjab also has a track record of gallantry services and state’s contribution to defence services is highest in the country. Punjab government has now created history by opening country’s first ever institute to help girls from state, choose an elite career as commissioned officer.
Christened after the famous young woman warrior, Mai Bhago. She had valiantly fought Mughals alongside Guru Gobind Singh in 1705. The Mai Bhago Armed Forces Preparatory Institute (MBAFPI) will go a long way towards women empowerment as despite having a glorious history of gallantry services, Punjabi women have been so far eluded from serving the defence services.
Number of female candidates has never been so encouraging in the country. According to an estimate, in the 17 lakh strong national contingent of armed forces, women constitute just 3 to 8 percent of the officer cadre. Mai Bhago Armed Forces Preparatory will go a long way in increasing the dismal number of women officers in defence services. In the first batch, 25 students were selected out of the 1658 applicants through a tough entrance examination followed by grilling physical and psychological tests.
A stepping-stone to coveted commissioned officers in the defence services, the institute has come up in the lines of Maharaja Ranjit Singh Armed Forces Preparatory Institute for boys. Students at the Mai Bhago Armed Forces Preparatory Institute will be equipped with skills required to become officers in the Army, Navy and Air Force.
Maharaja Ranjit Singh Armed Forces Preparatory Institute has so far received superb success. It is noteworthy that within three of its inception, 51 candidates have successfully cleared the coveted NDA, including 22 in the last session in the 2015. Mai Bhago Armed Forces Preparatory Institute is now poised to replicate the success by imparting specialized training exclusively to female candidates to groom them for joining defence services as officers.
The institute will groom the selected candidates over a period of three year. Besides completing their graduation, these girls will also acquire officer-like qualities over a period of three years.
This Academy campus has come up at sprawling eight acres land in Mohali. Constructed at a cost of Rs 12 crores, the fully residential campus has all the modern facilities including multi-gym, swimming, shooting, sports fields, etc. The institute facilitates graduation (BSc/BA/ BCom) in a leading local college, besides imparting training in sports & physical fitness, personality development, grooming, communication skills, preparation to face SSB interview.
Career in armed forces is not just a career option but also gives an opportunity to showcase patriotism and dedication towards motherland. Mai Bhago Armed Forces Preparatory Institute in long run would prove to be milestone in playing a vital role in substantially increasing the number of induction of Punjabi girls into the armed forces.