Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Govt moves SC against permanent commission for women in army

Government on Tuesday moved the Supreme Court challenging the Delhi High Court judgement directing it to grant permanent commission to women serving in the army.

The appeal against the March 12 verdict of the High Court was filed a day after its single Bench issued contempt notice to the Army Chief and Defence Ministry for not complying with its direction.

The Centre, in its petition, has sought stay of the operation of the High Court judgement and its review.

"We have filed the appeal against the High Court judgement and have sought stay of its operation," said advocate Anil Katiyar, who filed the petition on behalf of the Centre.

The High Court, in a landmark judgement, had directed the government to allow grant of permanent commission to women serving in short service commission saying they "deserve better from the government" which had shown reluctance in treating them on par with their male counterpart.

Delivering the verdict on a batch of petitions filed by more than 60 serving and retired women officers from army and air force, the division bench had said they would be treated equally with male officers.

However, it had turned turned down their plea of being allowed in combat operation.

The High Court had rejected the plea of the government that permanent commission can be allowed only for future recruitment and the benefit cannot be given retrospectively for the serving and retired lady officers who had approached the court.

The air force has complied with the High Court order. No no officer from the Navy had approached the court.

Currently, women are inducted in the Army as officers under Short Service Commission for a maximum period of 14 years whereas their male counterparts are eligible to receive permanent commission after five years.

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