In what can be termed as a major blow to the women officers of the Indian Army, the Armed Forces Tribunal (AFT) today rejected the plea of the officers to grant them interim relief. The Women officers had approached the AFT after the Army had issued 28 women officers a release order of September 12.
The AFT also refused to grant the women Army officers leave to appeal before the SC in the matter. Speaking to The Probe, Sudhanshu S Pandey, the counsel for the women Army officers said, “It is rather unfortunate that the tribunal has not protected these women officers who had faced such gender discrimination. They have been part of the Indian Army for more than 20 to 25 years. While their cases were pending in the SC, if the tribunal would have granted them stay on their release order, they would have at least got some reprieve”.
Earlier, in a similar case related to the Navy, the Supreme Court had directed the Armed Forces Tribunal to hear individual cases of women Navy officers and dispose of the matters by October 31st. The women Navy officers had also cited gender discrimination and had approached the apex court for Permanent Commission.
Alleging gender disparity, 72 other serving women Army officers had recently sent a legal notice to the Indian Army asking the organisation to grant them Permanent Commission at par with their male counterparts or face contempt proceedings in the Supreme Court.
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