The Defence Ministry was today slammed by a Parliamentary panel for the “negativism” over employing more women in the three Services and taking women officers as a “time gap” arrangement to meet the shortage of male officers.
The panel also pulled up the Ministry for the “discriminative” policies in granting permanent commission to women and accused it of turning a blind eye to its recommendations on inducting more females in armed forces.
“We fail to understand the negativism when it comes to employing more women in the armed forces and reiterate their earlier recommendation to enhance intake of women in various branches of armed forces,” the Committee on Empowerment of Women said in its report on ‘Women in Armed Forces’ tabled in Parliament today.
On its recommendations for opening more branches for Permanent Commission to women,the Committee said,”Defence Ministry has turned a blind eye to this recommendation by sticking to their earlier stand that women officers would be considered only in specific branches.”
The report stated Committee’s suggestions to explore possibility of having more women officers in branches such as Military police,Army Postal Service and General Service have been dismissed with a grim reply by the Ministry.
“It is extremely disturbing to note that Ministry has not even bothered to try even exploring a single other option for women officers and instead relied heavily on the existing discriminative policies,” it said.
The Committee said it had “objections” to the way women officers were being used as a time gap arrangement to compensate for the shortage of male officers without showing an iota of concern for their future.
“Since we believe that ad-hocism does more harm than anything to the morale of the women officers,we reiterate our earlier recommendation to form long term policies for them.”
The Committee reiterated that it strongly believed in the inner strength of women in upholding the pride of the nation and protecting its territorial integrity and asked the Ministry to grant permanent commission in more branches.