21 Sep 2021 9:22 AM GMT
The Ministry of Defense has informed the Supreme Court that women candidates shall be considered for entry in the three defence services, in the existing streams, through the National Defence Academy.The affidavit filed by Captain Shantanu Sharma, Director (AG), at DMA, Ministry of Defence further adds that while the entrance examination for entry into NDA are held twice in a year, the...
The Ministry of Defense has informed the Supreme Court that women candidates shall be considered for entry in the three defence services, in the existing streams, through the National Defence Academy.
The affidavit filed by Captain Shantanu Sharma, Director (AG), at DMA, Ministry of Defence further adds that while the entrance examination for entry into NDA are held twice in a year, the Government proposes to have the necessary mechanism in place by May 2022 i.e, by the time when UPSC is required to publish the first notification of the year 2, for entrance examination for entry to NDA.
Additional Solicitor General Aishwarya Bhati had recently told the Supreme Court that a decision had been taken to allow the induction of women into the armed forces through the National Defence Academy.
A bench led by Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, which was hearing a plea that sought that women be allowed to take part in the NDA exams, was extremely glad to note the submission of ASG Bhati and had thus allowed her to place future plan before it by 20th September, 2021.
The Ministry has thus informed the Court that deliberate planning and meticulous preparation is being undertaken to ensure smooth induction and seamless training of such women candidates.
Accordingly, a few preparatory actions have been placed for the kind consideration of the Supreme Court: They are:
1. Directorate General Armed Forces Medical Services and a body of Experts will formulate medical standards for women candidates for the three Defence services taking into account various aspects like their young age, nature of training to be undergone as also functional/operational requirements of the Indian Army, Navy and Air Force etc.
2. Intake Strength shall be determined by the cadre ratio, capability of specific service Academy to absorb the intake, the desired cadre structure and its downstream effect, envisaged requirement and employment by the respective Defence services, i.e. the operational, budgetary and administrative criteria.
3. Since no parallel standards for Training of women candidates exist, curriculum and parameters, for outdoor training (ODT), which includes drill, equitation, swimming, games, sports, etc shall have to be formulated. It is further clarified that any dilution of physical training and service subject would invariably impact the Battle worthiness of the Armed Forces adversely.
4. With regard to infrastructural requirements, the affidavit submits that accommodation requirements shall be expanded over time till the permanent plan fructifies. Various security and privacy arrangements, administrative and medical facilities will also be increased for which additional projects will be planned.
"...a Study Group has been constituted by the Defence services, comprising of the Experts to expeditiously formulate the comprehensive curriculum for women cadets at NDA and a Board of Officers has been convened to give a holistic and futuristic proposal for training of women Cadets at NDA incorporating all relevant aspects", adds the affidavit.
It is thus submitted that the compliance of all such changes would take some reasonable time.
Whilst placing on record such affirmative stance of the government to induct women candidates, it is prayed that the instant petition be disposed.