The Indian Army has granted the time scale colonel rank to five women officers after their 26 years of service.
A Selection Board of the Indian Army cleared the way for the promotion of five women officers to Colonel (Time Scale) rank after they completed 26 years of reckonable service, the Ministry of Defence said on Monday.
The five women officers selected for Colonel Time Scale rank are Lt Col Sangeeta Sardana from the Corps of Signals, Lt Col Sonia Anand and Lt Col Navneet Duggal from the Corps of EME and Lt Col Reenu Khanna and Lt Col Ritcha Sagar from the Corps of Engineers.
This was the first time that women officers serving with the Corps of Signals, Corps of Electronics and Mechanical Engineers, and Corps of Engineers were approved to the Colonel rank. Previously, promotion to the rank was applicable for women officers in Army Medical Corps, Judge Advocate General and Army Education Corps only.
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A press release by the Ministry of Defence stated, “The widening of promotion avenues to more branches of the Indian Army is a sign of increasing career opportunities for women officers. Combined with the decision to grant permanent commission to women officers from a majority of branches of the Indian Army, this step defines the Indian Army’s approach towards a gender-neutral Army.”
The Supreme Court had last week passed an interim order permitting women to take the admission exam to National Defence Academy (NDA) where earlier only men could join.
A bench comprising Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Hrishikesh Roy observed the status quo was a policy decision based on gender discrimination…respondents (Centre), must take a constructive view.”
The court had also pulled up the Army for resisting opportunities to women and asked it to change its attitude and not wait for judicial orders to be passed in such matters.