How to Become a Pilot in the Indian Air Force

Do you want to become a Pilot in the IAF (Indian Air Force)? If yes, this article will be of help to you. This step-by-step guide has been crafted keeping the needs of IAF aspirants in mind. In this guide, you will be reading about – how to become a pilot in the Indian Air Force, eligibility criteria, entrance tests, age limit and other important details.

 

IAF Pilot

 

It is not uncommon to see young Indians dreaming about joining the Indian Air Force. Within the Indian Air Force, the flying branch is the most popular choice among young Indian students and graduates.

 

‘Fighter pilot’ is a very glamorous and exciting role within IAF’s flying branch. But roles in the IAF is not just limited to fighter pilots! The IAF also has ground duty officers, technical staff, helicopter pilots and transport pilots!

 

If you are really passionate about joining the IAF, you should be knowledgeable about the structure and departments of the IAF. You must be aware of the various sections within the IAF. Come, let us find out more details about it –

 

Main branches of IAF

Broadly speaking, the IAF is made up of three main branches –

  1. Flying branch
  2. Aeronautical Engineering branch (Mechanical and Electronics Engineering)
  3. Ground Duty Branches

 

If you want to become a pilot, you must join the Flying Branch of IAF. In the flying branch, you’ll find the following types of pilots –

  • Fighter pilots
  • Transport pilots
  • Helicopter pilots

 

Let us check out the different ways to join IAF’s flying branch –

 

Interested candidates may join the flying branch after completing 10+2 or after graduation. In both these cases, you must crack the relevant entrance test and other tests (physical, medical and SSB Interview).

 

Let us check out each entry mode and find out details about eligibility criteria, entrance tests and age limit –

 

1 NDA Entry (10+2 entry)

NDA is entry is for 10+2 passed students. In short, it is an entry you may use right after completing schooling. The NDA entrance test is conducted twice a year by the UPSC.

 

Only male candidates are eligible to make use of NDA entry. Here’s the eligibility criteria in detail –

 

Eligibility criteria

  • Nationality – Indian
  • Gender – Male
  • Age – 16 ½ to 19 years (at the time of commencement of course)
  • Educational Qualifications – 10+2 with Physics and Mathematics. Students appearing in final year are also eligible to apply

 

UPSC usually releases NDA entrance advertisement in May and December. Eligible candidates may apply for the exam online.

 

2 CDSE Entry (for graduates)

CDSE stands for Combined Defence Services Examination). Using this entry, eligible candidates may apply for IAF flying branch. CDSE entry is for graduates. The UPSC conducts CDSE test twice a year.

 

Only male candidates are eligible to join the flying branch of IAF through CDSE entry. Come, let us take a closer look at the eligibility criteria –

 

Eligibility criteria

  • Nationality – Indian
  • Gender – Male
  • Marital Status – Single
  • Age – 20 to 24 years (at the time of commencement of course)
  • Educational qualifications – Graduate (Three Year Course) in any discipline from a recognized University (with Physics and Mathematics at 10+2 level) / BE / B Tech (Four Year Course) | Final Year/semester students are also eligible to apply, provided they produce Degree certificate issued by the University as per the date stipulated in the advertisement | No Percentage Bar for CDSE entry

 

UPSC releases CDSE exam advertisement in June and November months.

 

3 NCC Special Entry (for graduates holding Air Wing Senior Division ’C’ Certificate of the NCC)

This special entry is meant for candidates holding Air Wing Senior Division ’C’ Certificate of the NCC. This entry is meant for male candidates only. Talking about this entry, eligible cadets must apply through respective NCC Air Squadrons/DG NCC. Let us check out the eligibility criteria –

 

Eligibility criteria

  • Nationality – Indian
  • Gender – Male
  • Marital Status – Single
  • Age –20 to 24 years (at the time of commencement of course)
  • Educational qualifications – Graduate (Three Year Course) in any discipline from a recognized University with minimum 60% marks or equivalent and have passed Physics and Mathematics at 10+2 level OR BE / B Tech (Four Year Course) from a recognized University with minimum 60% marks or equivalent | Final Year/semester students are also eligible to apply, provided they do not have any present backlogs at the time of SSB Testing and produce Degree certificate issued by the University as per the date stipulated in the advertisement | NCC Air Wing Senior Division ’C’ certificate

4 SSC Entry (for graduates through AFCAT)

SSC stands for Short Service Commission. This entry is meant for graduates to join the IAF’s flying branch. Both male and female candidates are eligible to make use of this entry. Interested candidates may apply through AFCAT.

 

IAF conducts AFCAT twice a year. Come, let us check out the eligibility criteria –

 

Eligibility criteria

  • Nationality – Indian
  • Gender – Male and female
  • Marital Status – Single
  • Age – 20 to 24 years (at the time of commencement of course). Upper age limit for Candidates holding valid and current Commercial Pilot License issued by DGCA (India) is relaxed up to 26 years(at the time of commencement of course)
  • Educational qualifications – Graduates (Three Year Course) in any discipline from a recognized University who have attained minimum 60% marks or equivalent and have Physics and Mathematics at 10+2 level OR BE / B Tech (Four Year Course) from a recognized university with minimum 60% marks or equivalent | Final Year students are also eligible to apply, provided they do not have any backlog at the time of SSB Testing and produce Degree certificate issued by the University as per the date stipulated in the advertisement

 

IAF publishes AFCAT advertisements in June and December months. Short Service Commission in Flying branch is for 14 years with no further extension.

 

Also read: How to become a Commercial Pilot in India

 

If you want to become a pilot in the IAF, you may use the above mentioned entries. Eligibility criteria, name of the entries and entrance tests have been clearly mentioned in the above paragraphs. Choose a suitable entry and register for the same!

Share this awesome article!
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedin

One Response

  1. Jainam November 30, 2017

Leave a Reply