The Centre is considering a proposal to give admission to girl students in Sainik Schools and the National Defence Academy (NDA), Minister of State for Defence Subhash Bhamre said on Friday.

“There is a suggestion from the (Parliamentary) Standing Committee, there have been PILs and many members have also suggested… Sainik Schools prepare students for NDA, and the NDA is not taking girl cadets,” Bhamre said while replying to a query during Question Hour in the Lok Sabha.

“This is a matter under consideration whether to give admission to girls in Sainik Schools as well as the NDA,” he said.

The Minister said there are at present 26 Sainik Schools, and 21 more are at different stages of approval.

Of these 21, Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) have been signed for nine schools, three have been given in-principle approval, and nine are in “process of examination”.

He added that there are 64 more proposals that have been submitted to the Ministry for opening Sainik Schools, and they are under consideration.

The Sainik Schools are established and managed by the Sainik Schools Society under the Defence Ministry.

The Sainik Schools were conceived in 1961 by then Defence Minister V.K. Krishna Menon to rectify the regional and class imbalance amongst the officer cadre of the forces, and to prepare students for entry into the NDA and the Indian Naval Academy.