The Supreme Court has asked the centre to allow women to appear for the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) National Defence Academy (NDA) exam from this session. The application process for the same started on September 24 and will remain active till October 8. The women candidates have been given only 15 days to apply for the NDA exam.
Only male candidates were allowed to appear in this exam till now, but the Supreme Court has recently changed that rule for women and has allowed them to appear for the NDA Exam.
The recruitment board selects the eligible candidates after following several strict procedures, including physical training. Therefore, making new rules regarding medical fitness and other standards for female candidates in such a short time is a big challenge for the board. Apart from this, the candidates have to clear the NDA exam and stay on the premises of the training institute. The governing body will now be required to build a separate infrastructure for the women candidates in a short time.
Women candidates need not pay the exam fee. As per norms, an application fee of Rs 100 is charged from candidates belonging to the unreserved category. The exam is scheduled to be held on November 14.
The Centre had earlier mentioned that separate aspects of training and curriculum for women candidates need to be prepared such as outdoor training, drills, swimming, sports, games, etc should be designed differently. To prepare the curriculum for women candidates, proper analysis and expert opinion are required. SC had asked the centre earlier for detailed information about the road map prepared for the NDA examination for women.
The UPSC will recruit for as many as 400 posts out of which 370 are for NDA and 30 for the naval academy. The vacancies for women candidates are likely to be added to the existing posts.
Those who clear the NDA exam will be called for an interview round by the Service Selection Board (SSB). Thereafter a medical exam will be held. After clearing all these rounds, candidates will get enrolled in NDA, INA academies and will be trained following which they will be recruited in the army, navy, and airforce.
The NDA written exam consists of two papers. The first paper is of mathematics and consists of 300 marks featuring 120 questions. The second paper is the General Ability Test (GAT), which comprises an English section of 50 questions carrying 200 marks and a general studies paper that carries 400 marks. It also has 150 questions from Physics, Chemistry, General Science, History, Geography and Current Affairs. Both the papers carry a total of 900 marks and will be for a duration of 2.5 hours.