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Permanent commission for Women Officers

Permanent commission for Women Officers

Highlights Of Permanent commission for Women Officers

In a historic judgment, the Supreme Court has ordered the Centre to ensure that women officers are given permanent commission (PC) in the Army, while adding that the officers will be now eligible for command posting.

We are officers bound by restrictions, but in the morning, after the judgment came, we just expressed our happiness in public. I got a call from one of my male colleagues asking me if I had permission to do so… But I said, ab toh kar diya (now I have done it),” says the officer. The others laugh along.

“This victory means a lot. Women in the forces represent women in society. These women were not asking for any charity or favour. These are competent and hardworking women, and they were asking for their due, what they deserve. This victory has come in installments, and it has been a long journey,” says Lekhi, who has been associated with the case for over 10 years.

The judgment recorded that the policy statement had endorsed permanent commission for SSC women officers in 10 streams of the ‘Combat Support Arms’ and ‘Services’ sections. These are Signals, Engineers, Army Aviation, Army Air Defence, Electronics and Mechanical Engineers (EME), Army Service Corps, Army Ordinance Corps and Intelligence in addition to the existing two streams of Judge Advocate General (JAG) and Army Education Corps.

The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed the Union government’s submissions that women are physiologically weaker than men as a “sex stereotype” and declared that Short Service Commission (SSC) women officers are eligible for permanent commission and command posts in the Army irrespective of their years of service.

The court dismissed the government’s stand that only women officers with less than 14 years of service ought to be considered for permanent commission, and those with over 20 years service should be pensioned immediately. Applying the judgment retrospectively, the court declared that all serving women officers would be eligible for permanent commission

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