The government on Thursday issued an order for permanent commission of women oficers in the force. The case was first filed in the Delhi High Court.
The women officers in 2003 filed the case. After that it received a favourable order in 2010. Five months after the Supreme Court called for a “change in mindsets”. Regarding women officers of the Indian Army, the government on Thursday issued a fovourable order.
The 10 streams to get this benefit is army air defence, signals, engineers, army aviation, electronics and mechanical engineers. The army service corps and Intelligence corps in addition to the existing streams of judge. Also the advocate general and army educational corps.
The order specifies grant of permanent commission to Short Service Commissioned (SSC) women officers in all 10 streams of the Indian Army.
While male SSC officers could opt for permanent commission at the end of 10 years of service. This option was not available to women officers. They were, thus, kept out of any command appointment. They could not qualify for government pension, which starts only after 20 years of service as an officer.
On February 17, the supreme court directed that women officers of the Indian Army, serving under Short Service Commission. Will now be considered for grant of a Permanent Commission, irrespective of tenure of service, and also for command posts in non-combat areas. Since an absolute bar on women seeking criteria or command appointments would not comport with the guarantee of equality under Article 14.
In March, the SC cleared way for permanent commission to women in Indian Navy, saying “the battle for gender equality is about confronting the battles of the mind”. If granted Permanent Commission, women naval officers can serve till the age of retirement and will be entitled to pension.
Thus, the supreme court order implements the permanent commission of women. This decision will empower many women.