"The highest national priority must be the unleashing of woman power in governance and defence . That is the single most important source of societal energy that we have kept corked for half a century". -Mani Shankar Aiyar
1. It is the society that is the feeder to any organization within its realm and the same is seen through its functioning & projection. Traditionally, men were the warriors & the women housekeepers, the roles were well demarcated. Changes over the period have merged this distinguished line of specific gender task distribution and has managed to put a wedge into the male dominated culture. The first batch of women officers got commissioned in1992, now 17 years past, women still have not been able to break the barrier fully inspite of breaking the crust and making inroads. Yet with time they have started to see the bigger canvas and so also their scope on the same. . A few discriminatory policies as been professed by the government need review such as their short service commission, combat exclusion, and entry into ranks and so on. Different set of policies will only affect the working efficiency and interaction between the two genders in the services. Fore- planning and systematic approach should be the correct approach prior to deciding on any such issue. 2.Notwithstanding this, Armed forces have been constituted with the sole purpose of ensuring defence of the country and all policy decisions should be guided by this overriding factor. All matters concerning defence of the country have to be considered in a dispassionate manner. No decision should be taken which even remotely affects the cohesiveness and efficiency of the military. Concern for equality of sexes or political expediency should not influence defence policies. 3. Induction of women into selected fields of Indian Armed Forces has given rise to the issue of their employability in various spheres and how training is to be affected. At the same time, the dignity of women shall never be compromised at any cost. The way women are treated in Army should be a benchmark of ideal behaviour towards the women in the society and not otherwise. It is imperative for the men in uniform as well as the society at large to realize the importance of women in uniform and take all the steps to ensure that their ‘Garima’ is maintained and improved at all times. This study seeks to analyse the above issue in Indian context.
(c) Historical Perspective & World Overview.
(d) Employment Problems and Present Status.
(e) Training and Related Aspects.
(f) Future Role Prospects.
(g) Ways to enhance the Garima of Women in uniform.
PART-I: HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE AND WORLD OVERVIEW
12. The Indian mythology sources the whole energy in the entire creation to a female deity called Shakti, the consort of Lord Shiva. To this day we celebrate this victory every year as Durga Pooja. All civilizations have myths based on female goddesses- hunters, warriors, nurturers and preservers. History is replete with such female warrior commanders, Maharani Laxmibai of Jhansi, Razia Sultan and Chand Bibi to quote a few. This trend is in no way extinct. Nonetheless, the women culture in armies drew controversies during the medieval period and since then has refused to die down. Despite various roles in the armies of past societies, it is only recently that women have begun to be given a more expanded role in contemporary armed forces of the world, and thus, the debate picks up more vociferously. 13. Women in India have always played an active role when it comes to safeguarding the nation. But organizing women into an army was, probably, done for the first time by Subhash Chandra Bose. The women in Indian National Army (INA) fought for their country`s independence along...