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Home Law Mindset must change: Supreme Court upholds permanent commission for women in the Army

Mindset must change: Supreme Court upholds permanent commission for women in the Army

The apex court has ordered that all terms of appointments for female officers should be the same as their male counterparts. "The contentions of 'physiological limitations' and 'social norms' are disturbing and cannot be accepted," said the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court has ordered the centre to ensure that women officers are given a permanent commission in the Army. As per reports, upholding the Delhi HC’s 2010 verdict, the apex court also noted that ‘a mindset change’ is needed in this regard to end gender-based discrimination in the commissioning of women in the armed forces.

As per reports, the apex court has ordered that all terms of appointments for female officers should be the same as their male counterparts. The apex court, in its verdict, has stated that the centre’s objections, in this case, mentioning ‘physiological limitations’, and ‘social norms’ to deny an opportunity to women officers are disturbing and cannot be accepted.

The apex court has also reportedly criticised the centre for prejudicing the case.

“It is an insult to women as well as the army when aspersions are cast on women, their ability and their achievements,” the SC noted.

As per reports, last year, the defence ministry had granted a permanent commission to women in all 10 branches of the Indian Amry, including Signal Corps, intelligence, aviation, engineering, service corps and ordinance corps. However, the centre had argued that permanent commission will only be given to those officers who had joined after 2014.

The Supreme Court has held that permanent commission will be applied to all women officers irrespective of numbers of years in service. As reported by Bar and Bench, it has asserted that it is indefensible to deny women officers a permanent commission and a blanket ban on command posting cannot be sustained under law. It has also held that the exclusion of women from command posting goes against the principles against discrimination and equal opportunity in public service, as mentioned in Articles 14 and 16 of the Indian Constitution.

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