What Govt Thinks About The Issues It May Face If Women Are Inducted In Combat Roles?


What are the issues the government may face if women are inducted in combat roles in armed forces?

India, which has one of the largest armies in the world, had been resisting women’s entry into combat roles citing their ‘vulnerability’ and physical and mental ‘ability’ to cope with the stress of frontline deployments. However, a radical change in this notion was seen in February last year when President Pranab Mukherjee, addressing a joint session of parliament ahead of the budget session, announced that the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government would allow women to take up combat roles in all sections of the country’s armed forces. But, a latest report suggests that the government is pondering over the various issues that it may face in such a scenario.
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A report in The Mail Today said many legal and social issues are being discussed by the armed forces while preparing a comprehensive policy under the Defence Ministry in this regard.

“We have to address all possible legal fallouts as well as prepare answers to issues that may arise before women are inducted in combat roles,” the tabloid quoted a military official.

Forces are trying to find answers for sensitive issues such as an affair between a lady officer and a jawan and how to deal with it. “There is no clarity on this aspect,” the official said.

An official said that the forces are also worried about how women will manage situations if they are deployed on the LoC or Siachen Glacier or their warship sets out for sails and remains on the high seas for months.

Another major issue is of pregnancy of lady officers and how the forces would have to find their replacement. Another biggest issue is about providing family support to lady officers. An official even cited a foreign lady General from a militarily powerful country who had come to India recently telling him how difficult it was for her to manage her family due to lack of infrastructure support. “She preferred not to have children,” said the official, adding, “Now, we cannot have a situation where we can ask lady officers not to have children.”
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Policy makers are also looking at a situation where both husband and wife have to leave for a long deployment. The government will have to create facilities for their children in such a scenario.

Another issue is that of matching up to physical standards that are applicable to male officers and cannot be made lenient in any way for women, the report stated.

Source: xaam.in

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