Government on Saturday said women officers in the armed forces could be considered for combat role in future depending upon their willingness to undergo hard training. It has also directed that all salary anomalies and discrimination against them should be sorted out.
In significant remarks in the wake of a controversy over allegations of gender bias in the three services, Defence Minister Pranab Mukherjee has said till the time comes when they assume combat roles, women officers in the Army could be inducted into operating high-tech weapon system and platform.
"They will be doing very well in Information Technology. They are doing very well in the medical services. But we want them in other areas also. In hard areas also we want them to participate more and more depending on their willingness," he said in an interview to the All India Radio's 'Spotlight' programme.
"Right now we are not putting them (in combat roles) because it is much more hazardous, but surely I am quite confident a day will come when they will make their contribution."
Mukherjee said he has directed the Army Chief "to look into this that it should be equal pay and uniform" for women officers and all discrimination in pay and other allowances against them should be sorted out.
The minister said as far as recruitment under Short Service Commission (SSC) was concerned, women were in a more advantageous position. However, in certain other areas they have some disadvantages with respect to salaries, allowances and other types of perks.