On Tuesday, the Supreme Court granted permanent commission to women officers in the Indian Navy with an order that read, “Women can sail with the same efficiency as male officers and there should be no discrimination.”
A division of bench of justices DY Chandrachud and Ajay Rastogi said refraining permanent commission for women will amount to miscarriage of justice. The court said that there cannot be gender discrimination in allotting permanent commission to women officers in the Navy after the statutory bar was revoked by the Centre to allow entry to women. “Once the statutory bar was lifted to allow entry of women officers, male and female officers would be treated equally in granting permanent commission,” the SC added.
The bench however rejected the Centre’s stand that women officers in the Navy cannot be allotted sea duties because Russian made vessels does not have women washrooms. The SC referring to the Centre’s stand said there are enough evidences to suggest women officers in Navy brought recognition and honour to the force. The verdict also grants benefits such as pensions and other allowance as compared to their male counterpart in the Navy.
A permanent commission entitles an officer to serve in the Navy till he/she retires unlike Short Service Commission (SSC), which is for 10 years that can be extended by four years.