From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : Not Much
Mains level : Women in armed forces
The Supreme Court has held that the Army’s “selective” evaluation process discriminates against and disproportionately affects women short service commission officers seeking a permanent commission.
What did the Court say?
- The Court held the view that the evaluation criteria set by the Army constituted systemic discrimination against the petitioners (women officers).
- The evaluation pattern of women officers has caused them economic and psychological harm.
- In a series of directions, the court ordered that the cases of women officers who have applied for the permanent commission should be reconsidered in a month and the decision on them should be given in two months.
Asks for permanent commission
- They would be considered for permanent commission subject to disciplinary and vigilance clearance.
- The court said physical standards should be kept at a premium during selection.
- The court highlighted how one of the Army’s “administrative requirements” was to benchmark women officers, under consideration for permanent commission, with male officers who are lowest in merit.
- This is arbitrary and irrational, said Justice Chandrachud.