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A progressive move by Supreme Court towards permanent women commission in Air force

  • “Let her fly... let her be airborne all the time,” Chief Justice, T.S. Thakur told the government, taking Air Force woman pilot Sandeep Kaur under its protective wing.
     
    The order came when Ms. Kaur’s application for a permanent commission was rejected in March 2016. The establishment said she was not “entitled” to seek one. The Air Force Tribunal, being supportive of the movement, told the Union to allow Ms. Kaur to stay on if she qualified and was found suitable. The Air Force Tribunal asked the authorities to decide her application in two months. But the Union decided to take the fight to the Supreme Court and seek a stay of the order.
     
    Adv. Arun Monga, counsel of Wg Cdr Sandeep Kaur, referred to a Delhi High Court order in a similar case and put forth that these “young ladies have sacrificed the prime of their life to serve the nation”, but got a raw deal as they left service without a pension. On being informed that she would not get a pension, Chief Justice Thakur said, “Then let her fly, let her continue.”
     
    Mr. Rohatgi conceded, saying no move would be made to decommission the wing commander without first seeking the court’s permission.
     
    Earlier also a number of petitions have been filed before various High Courts and Supreme Court to fight the discrimination faced by women officers over the issue of permanent commission. After waging a long battle to get permanent commission and anxiously counting on the judiciary to grant all these petitioner some relief, the Supreme Court has finally supported the fight of Wing Commander Sandeep Kaur in her fight for permanent commission in the Force.

    OUR TAKE

    A very progressive and reformist move made by the Supreme Court towards the struggle faced by women officers when it comes to securing their position in the force permanently. A lot of women officers have earlier as well filed several petitions to stop ‘discrimination against women Army officers, who are given only Short Service Commission for periods extendable up to 10 years’. On a optimistic note the Navy too has appealed against the previous order of Delhi High Court, declaring that sexist biasness has blocked women’s progress in the forces and that  “men and women are identified by the same yardstick”.


    Consult with the top armed forces tribunal lawyers in India at LawRato.


    Visit the Indian Kanoon section of LawRato to learn more on Indian Laws.

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