In the past few years, India has been taking major steps towards gender inclusivity in its armed forces such as by enabling women to serve in combat positions in the Navy and Air Force. In 2016, President Pranab Mukherjee had announced that all wings of the Indian armed forces (except the Indian Army) will be accepting women in combat roles and ever since then, we've seen so many women reach new heights of success in the traditionally male-dominated field.
Now, an all-women bikers contingent of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) will make its debut and showcase daredevil stunts at the January 26 Republic Day parade at Rajpath and we're supremely excited for it! The 65-member team will display acrobatic skills on 350cc Royal Enfield Bullet motorcycles towards the end of the over 90-minute-long parade.
Talking about the same, CRPF spokesperson Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Moses Dhinakaran said, "It will be the first time that our women bikers are going to be a part of the Republic Day parade." He added, "This squad was raised in 2014 as part of our commitment to involving women in all spheres of duties rendered by us."
The members of the squad have been specially chosen by CRPF trainers and are all in the age bracket of 25 to 30. In fact, this women biker team has also performed at the birth anniversary celebrations of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, India's first Home Minister, in Gujarat on October 31, 2019, which was attended by PM Narendra Modi.
At the 71st Republic Day parade this Sunday, the all-women CRPF contingent is expected to present as many as nine acts of daring bike riding and conclude by forming a human pyramid on multiple motorcycles. Sounds thrilling, doesn't it?! The contingent will be commanded by Inspector Seema Nag, who is posted with the Rapid Action Force (RAF) which is the special anti-riots combat unit of the CRPF.
The CRPF is the world's largest paramilitary force with about 3.25 lakh personnel in various ranks. In 1986, the CRPF had raised the first armed women's battalion in the Asia region and currently has six such units with over 1,000 personnel in each.
At the 2018 parade, a women bikers team from the Border Security Force (BSF) had made a similar debut. In 2015, women marching contingents of the Army, Navy and Air Force had debuted in the national parade. This year, the opportunity has been given to the CRPF women personnel and we're cheering for them all the way.