Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday announced in his Independence Day address that women officers in the military would get permanent commission on a par with their male counterparts. Details will be issued shortly, official sources said. Permanent commission exists for women in select areas in the military. However, Mr. Modi’s speech makes it clear that the government wants to expand these categories. “I want to give good news to our brave daughters. Women officers who have been selected through the short service commission in our defence forces will get the opportunity for a permanent commission,” Mr. Modi said. Many women officers have taken the legal route demanding permanent commission, and in April, the government told the Supreme Court that it was open to it. The contours of implementation are being finalised by the Defence Ministry, an official source said.
The Army is the most reluctant in granting it. While women are given commission in all arms and services other than infantry, mechanised infantry, armoured and Artillery, permanent commission is currently limited to education, legal branches apart from medical and dental services. These two streams were opened for permanent commission in all three services in 2011.