News Update/Press Release
Women Empowerment in real sense
The Supreme Court on September 8 2021, lifted the decade old ban on women getting commissioned permanently in the armed forces. Until the judgement, women were only allowed for short commission service in the armed forces, that too after the completion of their graduation. Allowing them entry into the NDA (National Defence Academy) will further boost up their confidence and get them closer to achieve their passion in the armed forces, since they will be joining at a very young age. The Supreme Court stressed that it “cannot belie the aspirations of young girls” as it rejected the Union government’s request to delay the first-ever examination for women candidates for their entry into the National Defence Academy (NDA), and directed that they shall be allowed to sit for the upcoming exam on November 14. While the previous battles for gender justice were confined to serving women officers, simultaneous thrusts are now aimed at the Armed Forces entry system.
This judgement came breaking off all the stereotypes that women had to go through in the past. As soon as the Supreme Court ruled out the induction of women in the armed forces, over 1,78,000 girls have applied for the admission into the NDA which is situated in Khadakwasla of Pune district, in Maharashtra. The entrance exam is scheduled to be held on November 14, 2021. With the Supreme Court interim order giving just two weeks’ notice to the UPSC, and given the stringent competition and the high standards of the Service Selection Board, the number of women who finally enter the portals of the NDA in the first batch could probably struggle to reach double figures.
With the judicial system having to view the gender justice issue in parts, the downstream effects to the larger military system are likely to be lost sight of. Without doubt, several policies in place for managing gender justice is in need of being transformed to meet the aspirations of Indian women who have for long been shackled by a paternalistic culture. With this, the path is clear for women to train along with men at the NDA, considered a male bastion. After the Supreme Court judgment last year which led to permanent commission for women officers, this is the second time that the court has nudged the Armed Forces towards gender equality.
Army General Manoj Mukund Narawane said, “the induction of women will be the “first step towards gender equality” in the armed forces, and added that women officers will be in the same position 40 years later that he is in now”. He further added, “The army chief said he is confident that women cadets will perform better than their male counterparts. “Over the years, as we have grown and matured; as the curriculum has changed, training methodology has changed, the course content has improved. We have become more well-trained and better-equipped to meet whatever challenges that emerge. As we go ahead, we shall be inducting women cadets into the academy”.
Induction of women in the armed forces is one big battle won! Inducting girls between the ages 16 to 18 will help them to get closer to solve challenging problems and demonstrate their skills at the toughest possible levels. This decision of including women in permanent commission must have come much earlier; nevertheless, let’s hope to see women in the place they deserve, serving the country in the highest order!