WOMEN IN NEPALi ARMY

Women in Nepalese Army

Policy and practice for women’s participation in the Nepali Army is based on the national policy of gender equality and women empowerment. The Nepali Army has recruited women since 1961.

Women’s participation in civil services and other security forces has followed an increasing trend since 1990. The Nepali Army started enrolling women from 1961 in technical service and from 2004 in general service. After the socio-political changes in 1990, the awareness and practice of gender equality increased throughout the country.

Even though the concept of women soldiers is not new in the Nepali Army, it has never before reached the proportions of today. Women’s participation in technical service in the Nepali Army also expanded continually as follows: Nurses (1961), Para folders (1965), Medical doctors (1969), Legal (1998), Engineering (2004) and Aviation (2011).

In 2004 when the country was fighting against insurgency, the Nepali Army opened its door to women soldiers in general service, which comprised of combat related duties. First women cadres in other rank were recruited from 2004 and then women officer cadets were enrolled in 2005. Since 2004, a number of other services have opened up for women soldiers. They are Military Police, Signalers, Office staffs, Army Band, Military Drivers, Military Clerks, Aircraft Technicians and in Combat, Combat Support and Combat Service Support Arms.

The policy for the management of women in uniform in the Nepali Army has continuously evolved through time. In 2010, to address the issues regarding woman officers' career and welfare through one door policy, women division was established under the Military Secretary Branch headed by deputy level officer of MS.

Among the officers of the Nepali Army, in the general service, 217 female officers are currently serving while the female technical officers' count is 205, female legal officer is 9 and female account officer is 16. Female participation in Junior Commission, Non- Commission Officers and other ranks include 5184 in general service, 433 in technical service, 235 in clerk, 27 in accountant and 306 in non-combatant role. Existing highest rank for women officers is T/Brigadier General (7) in the technical service, Judge Advocate Brigadier General (1) in legal service and Major (106) in the general service.

Listed below are some of the fields in which women soldiers are on active duty as of August 16, 2022.

Women in Nepalese Army


SN SERVICE Brig Gen Col Lt Col Maj Act Maj Capt Act Capt Lt WO1 WO2 Sgt Cpl L/Cpl Pte Recruit Nce Total
1 NORMAL       106   65 8 38 6 56 126 325 775 3390 506   5401
2 TECHNICAL 7 13 27 47 1 84   26 183 48 99 103         638
3 CLERK                 5 101 74 55         235
4 LEGAL 1 1 2 2   1   2                 9
5 NCE                 1   5   2     298 306
6 ACCOUNT     2 1   6   7 2 25             43
  TOTAL 8 14 31 156 1 156 8 73 197 230 304 483 777 3390 506 298 6632
Source: Army Record Office (AG), Nepali Army