In a landmark move, the defence ministry has ordered the Short Service Commission (SSC) to offer permanent positions to women serving in the Army.
“The order specifies grant of permanent commission (PC) to Short Service Commissioned (SSC) women officers in all 10 streams of the Indian Army,” Army Spokesperson Col Aman Anand said in a statement, PTI reports.
Ideally, under the SSC scheme, women officers were recruited for a tenure of five years, extendable up to 14 years.
But a permanent commission for women will ensure they can serve until the age of retirement. The directive was first issued by landmark judgment by the Supreme Court back in February.
According to the order, 10 streams in the Army are being made available to women – air defense, signals, engineers, army aviation, electronics and mechanical engineers, army service corps, and intelligence corps.
This announcement comes replacing the former order that allowed the permanent commission to women in only two positions – judge advocate general (JAG) and education.
“Their selection board will be scheduled as soon as all affected SSC women officers exercise their option and complete requisite documentation,” the Army spokesperson said about the renewed orders.
Women officers make a tiny-bit of the 43k-strong officer cadre in the Indian Army, according to TOI. Over the years, there have been a number of resistance regarding women serving greater roles in the Army.
However, there has been some progress lately. Indian Air Force back in 2016 recruited 8 women as fighter jet pilots in a landmark move.
Women officers are otherwise barred from serving the frontline of the army like onboard the warships and submarines, serving in the artillery, and so on.
(Cover image courtesy of Piyush Goyal via Twitter)
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