The Supreme Court on Wednesday will hear a plea filed by 17 women officers from the Indian Army alleging that the Army has not yet granted the Permanent Commission (PC) to even 50 per cent of women officers despite the top court’s judgment regarding the same.
Women Army officers have approached the Supreme Court alleging that its order directing the Central government to grant PC to women officers in the Army’s non-combat support units on par with their male counterparts was not properly implemented.
One such petition was filed by a woman officer, through her lawyer, Chitrangda Rastravara and Advocate on Record (AOR) Archana Pathak Dave, before the Supreme Court seeking its immediate direction to implement the February 2020 order.
The petition copy, read and exclusively accessed by ANI, filed before the apex court by the woman Army officer, revealed that till date, as far as the procedural aspects of implementation are concerned, there are certain ambiguities, which have not been addressed by the Army.
Rastravara, while talking to ANI, said that the apex court had clearly in its verdict in February 2020, had directed the Central government to give all benefits to all women officers, including PC, including promotion and all consequential benefits, irrespective of the number of years of service they might have put in.
“Despite the ruling of the Top Court, the implementation of the judgment is done only for good optics, and to eliminate the women officers from the Army rather than including them in the institution as per the intent of the directions given by the Supreme Court,” she said.
Rastravara alleged that women officers in the Army are still fighting gender stereotypes before the Supreme Court. She also sought the apex court’s intervention to direct enforcement of its own order in letter and spirit, by the respondent, Army, after one year of the judgement was pronounced.
According to Rastravara’s petition, the figure of 422 is a figure only for “good optics” and does not “truly portray the actual number”.
“Thus, finding those officers who are non-optees fit for PC and denying the same to optees smacks of gross arbitrariness,” read the petition.