The Centre on Friday announced the selection board for the grant of permanent commission to women officers has commenced its proceedings.
“The Special No 5 Selection Board constituted to screen women officers for grant of Permanent Commission (PC) in Indian Army commenced its proceedings at the Army Headquarters on 14 September 2020. The board is headed by a Senior General Officer and includes a woman officer of the rank of Brigadier,” said the Ministry of Defence in a statement.
“Women officers have been permitted to witness the proceedings as observers in order to add transparency to the process,” it added. The women officers who qualify in the screening process will be granted Permanent Commission subject to being in the minimum acceptable medical category.
In a formal letter of sanction, the central government had granted a permanent commission to women officers in the Indian Army.
In a crucial verdict on July 17, the Supreme Court directed that all eligible women officers should be granted permanent commissions and command posts. The top court had in February held that women should be considered for command roles and that all women officers are entitled to permanent commissions.
The apex court had directed that all the Short Service Commission (SSC) women officers have to be considered for Permanent Commissions (PCs) irrespective of the duration of service.
Meanwhile, Minister of State for Defence Shripad Naik in a written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha said that the strength of women officers serving the Indian Air Force (IAF) as on 1st September 2020 is 1,875. Of these, 10 women officers are Fighter Pilots and 18 women officers are Navigators.
“Ministry received proposal from IAF to induct women officers as fighter pilots. After approval of MoD, IAF commenced a scheme for “Induction of Women SSC officers in Fighter Stream of Flying Branch” in 2016, under which 10 women fighter pilots commissioned till date,” he added.