The Indian Air Force has taken a historic step by depicting India’s first batch of women fighter pilots in its latest ad. The digital campaign, conceptualised by Grey Group India, seeks to change people’s perception of what women are capable of.
Sandipan Bhattacharyya, Chief Creative Officer, GREY Group India said, “When you think fighter pilots, the imagery that’s deeply embedded in our minds is of an exclusive boy’s club, where guts and glory are the man’s sole prerogative. With the Indian Air Force recruiting its first batch of women fighter pilots late last year, we thought the time was right to take the battle for equality to the skies.”
The Indian Air Force is known to overcome barriers with courage, strength and valour. When the whole country was debating the role of women in society, and brands were trying to create a conversation around it, the Indian Air Force showed the way forward by commissioning India’s first batch of women fighter pilots.
Mr Bhattacharyya added, “A lot of women-centric campaigns are debating the stereotypes around the role and place of women in society, and brands have been creating a conversation around it. There’s a lot of talk, but is there any action? Changing mindsets and gender stereotypes begins by challenging them with action. Not just words, but involved action. The IAF is not paying lip service to the conversation around gender equality but walking the talk by recruiting women pilots and encouraging more women to shatter this ceiling. In many ways, this is a definitive stamp of equality, coming from the Air Force – often perceived as a bastion of male–only bravado.
The film boasts the achievement of its first women fighter pilots, and also sparks a conversation around the preconceived notions that many in society have about the role and place of a woman. The campaign goes a step ahead by showcasing Indian Air Force as a place where there are equal opportunities for both men and women.
“Very few brands can actually walk the talk. These are not actors, these are real Air Force pilots who are changing stereotypes every single day when they march out with their male colleagues and blaze through their drills. The idea is not to compete with the brand chatter. The idea is to inspire the next bunch of fearless women who believe equality is their birthright and that service of the nation should know no gender,” he concluded.