Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Akashdeep: An IAF – IGNOU Program to Enable One Lakh Airmen Achieve Graduate Status in Service

Addressing professional certification needs of higher learning of its personnel below officers rank including recognition of ‘in service’ training, Indian Air Force (IAF) today, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU), launching ‘Akashdeep’– a project registering existing airmen training institutes as Community Colleges enabling all serving airmen to obtain a Bachelor’s degree within 8-13 years of their service.

The MoU allowing conferring of educational certifications to airmen and NCs (E) (Non Combatants) (Enrolled) within the parameters laid down by IGNOU for Community Colleges was signed by Air Officer-In-charge Personnel, Air Marshal KJ Mathews on behalf of IAF and by IGNOU Vice Chancellor, Prof. V.N. Rajasekharan Pillai in the presence of the Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal PV Naik, senior IAF, IGNOU Officials and the MoU beneficiaries – IAF Airmen and NCs (E).

Under the arrangements, the two modules of the Joint Basic Phase Training (JBDT) will enable airmen to earn credit points that would be transferred to IGNOU for completing their Certificates, Diplomas and Associate Degrees in Arts, Science, Commerce, Business Administration, Hotel Management, Hospitality services, Medical services, Para Medical Sciences, Office Management, Automobile Trade performing skill, Music, Instrument Music. Subsequent to this, an airman can enroll for a one-year distance learning programme with IGNOU leading to award of Bachelor’s Degree.

For the non-combatants, the basic trade training imparted at IAF Training Institutes will make them eligible for award of Certificates in their respective trade by IGNOU. The launch of the project will immediately benefit nearly one lakh IAF personnel who will, on completion of the syllabus receive a Degree from the National University that has the potential to transform their post-retirement life besides helping them prepare for competitive jobs.

Presently, the entry level qualification requirements for airmen in IAF is 10+2 in Group-X and Y trades (Technical and non-technical trades), and Class-X for Group-Z trade (Musicians). For NCs (E), the minimum educational qualification requirement is also Class-X. However, individuals who did not complete 10+2 examination prior to joining the IAF can undergo a bridge programme of one semester before qualifying for registration to the Associate Degree.

Better qualified human resources will help IAF in gainful utilization of its resources. The programme, while validating IAF training curriculum is also one among the several welfare measures for its personnel. Project Akashdeep also signifies IAF’s association with sky and its quest for knowledge.


  1. Sir
    An airman who had joined IAF as 10+2 almost 20 years back and retired without improving his qualification during service. Is there any scope for him to get exemption of credits for achieving any associate degree from IGNOU?

  2. This news is all over the internet and known to Airmen of IAF.It was told that it will start on 1st July 2011. Today is 30 June 2011 and till now it is not known how to take admission .Even IGNOU doesnt know when it is going to start.Wont it be a gamble on my future after having completed 3 semesters of BCA if i wait for Project Akashdeep to finally TAKE OFF???

  3. Sir
    The information available in news-event column of IGNOU does not clarify about the eligibility of airmen for completing associate degree who have completed more than 13 years of service and had under gone complete training of two years plus in one stretch. Kindly publish the clerification to enable such airwariors to avail such a great opportunity.

  4. SIR,
    Is there any scope for him to get exemption of credits for achieving any associate degree from IGNOU?

  5. I have retired in Feb 2010 after 20 years of Service. Can I opt for any course under the 'Akashdeep' project. What is the procedure?