Sunday, September 27, 2009

Ladies and The Uniform

The debate on NDTV "We the People" today was about the permanent work for women in the Indian Army...more correctly,in the Infantry section of the Army.A cliched debate which goes on and on with no conclusion.

The first question that comes to my mind is that WHY do we need such a debate anyway? The Army is short of about 14,000 cadets or officers or whatever and on top of that,we are debating about the equal rights of women? I mean,where ARE the women that such questions about posting the ladies on the front pop up?

Okay,lets go to the general perception about the Army.Its a hard life,yes,and the moment someone in our homes mentions joining the Army  then its like the end of the world.Yes,I admit its easier to be typing out all these than actually seeing a brother or husband or son(or a sister or wife or daughter)returning only after several tiring months(or rather not returning at all,in some cases...I don't know whether such cases are "proud" ones or unfortunate ones)...but lets hear it out..what is it that makes people hesitate to join the army? I asked the question first to myself..why am I not joining then?Unfortunately,I got a meek answer saying I have always wanted to be an engineer and run Power Plants or Refineries or whatever.

The same question I asked a friend of mine,and his answer was very much peculiar.He said his friend applied for the Army but he never got the call,despite being physically fit.And his point was that in a time of job-shortage such as this,anybody would jump for any proffession,including the Defense.If a common person has this notion,then imagine how many people must be having such a notion that the "Defense force is not recruiting properly".

Well, people should understand that the Army,Navy or Air Force canNOT employ ANYONE who gives his/her applications.You cannot expect a person suffering from Asthma or breathing problems to be going to a hazardous place where its too cold or too dusty and still be up and fighting!(No offense intended,please)

Coming back to the topic now.Why can't ladies be given a post on the front? Why is it that people are so much apprehensive when it comes to women fighting on the front?Why are women not given the opportunity beyond the technical posts? Why are there different standards for men and women in the army? I am sure there are men reading this post who are very much in opposition to the different standards for men and women in the daily life.But thats not the point here.We are talking about National Security.No different standards for that please! As some lady in the program rightly mentioned,"Why are we supposed to be running 7 kms in 40 minutes when men are supposed to run the same distance in 25 minutes?Tell us to do the same..if we fail then throw us out!".

So you see,such debates go on and on.There are other perspectives too.Like the biological differences,ability to withstand difficult circumstances..etc etc.But all I can say,for now, least give a chance!


  1. nice 1.. well its an ongoing discussion.. the main reason is because of the dangers involved and the after effects if something happens to those women.. if u r interested.. check my detailed opinion here

  2. I certainly stand by the last point you puy through

  3. Even I watched the programme yesterday.
    My personal opinion is that women are just as tough as the men are,if not more.May be men who are in position have a complex and do not want any compition from women.

  4. Fair enough, Anu! :) I agree with Venky. The last point sums it up! :)

  5. @Vishnu
    Thank you.I checked your post.Nice one,and truthful :).
    Yes,dangers are involved,and I am sure the human-rights groups won't spare the govt if any woman dies while fighting at the front.Call it their hypocrisy or over-concern for woman!

    You mean you read only the last line?:P Well jokes apart,its more of a prestige-issue than some national issue.People need to focus on the lack of enrollment for the NDA,rather than the lack of WOMEN officers on the borders.

    @BK Chowlaji
    Nice point you made sir :).But even if the men do come to accept the ladies in commanding positions,perhaps in times of emergency,there might be some ego-clashes too.

    Thank you for your comment.You also read the last line only? :P(Just kidding!)

  6. bang on and an excelle true from heart post ..

    but lemme tel u sth .. imagine wt if a lady dies in the war with her say some organs got cut .. say hand ...
    again a prob..wil the people or the junta spare the govt /??? NO !!!

    think again wt if the lady remains unmarried jus cuz she is in army...not getting pregnant...not having a child...will any parent allow their daughter to be like that ?? IN INDIA ??? NO ..not really ...

    so there are problems with it ... n who said woman r not given a chance .. de r given.. but jus with a caution ...
    call it rubbisness..or care... i dont mind

    tats wt is in india

  7. Well, being a daughter of Army officers, with both parents in the Indian Army all I can say is women may not be able to join the Infantry and contribute in the front but there are other ways they can still contribute. They could join the Airforce as a pilot for an example. And the technical posts the women are offered are no less valuable compared to the Infantry. Well if a woman is really tough to go through all the tests and hardships then yes, they must be given a chance in the infantry also. But what if they decide after a while that they are not so tough to take up the role. What then.. where do you think they stand then? Overall a good post, written from the heart. Good luck


  8. nice post...these are some topics on which discussions are going y can't girls have equal status in cricket team while boys conclusions still derived..
    hope dey will be find soon...
    btw nice post dear :)

  9. Exactly. Give a chance at least. Differences can be there and would be there, we all know it. But at least women can somehow somewhere help in the situation.

  10. Anu I am tagging you too. Do that when you get time.
    And yes, one more thing , 'Get time' doesn't mean after 1-2 years :P

  11. @Anu

    I am known in the sphere for my minute readings and elaborate readings. :P.

    You may get such comments sometime soon too. Cheers!

  12. @SiMbA tAgO
    You are right of course,the people won't be any kinder to the government if any lady dies on duty or as POW.

    And regarding the marriage thing,well it depends.Suppose the lady is from an army family herself,perhaps then she would receive the right support from her family(perhaps).

    And the chances that are given wot women are sometimes rubbishness,sometimes with care.And this is what is India,we care too :P
    Anyways thank you for commenting!

  13. @Sunshine
    I am not saying the technical posts are inferior compared to picking up guns and being ready for combat,but all I am saying is when a woman wants to fight too,then why not give a chance?
    "But what if they decide after a while that they are not so tough to take up the role"
    Absolutely correct.Thats why people hesitate.But those who are determined,at least they can be given a chance too,right?
    There are other factors too of course.But all problems have a solution!

  14. @An ordinary girl
    Thank you:)

    Correct,I agree.
    And yeah I will surely do the 'tag' :)

    I was just kidding :P

  15. yeah accepted that the parents in case are from the army background may accept the job.. but still at times i have the feeling that they wont ... cuz they better know the hardships at them army .... so it can turn anyway....

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  17. Anu,
    You have raised an important point. But do you think the infantry is suitable for women? There are some works which are best when left to men. Who in the world (read woman) would want to exhaust herself for the sake of the country sacrificing her valuable body?

    But, the comments section had a very varied discussion, it is some fodder for the mind!

    Thank you :)

    Btw, thanks about telling me about the typo in the title of the post, it was not purposeful :D

    Happy Dusshera!

  18. the fact that they feel the need to have debate about it.. sums it up... free

  19. Hey!!
    Just came across your blog.
    I loved the post you posted previously :)
    Nice blog!
    Take care

  20. u wanna try army ! U must be really fed up with life. even for guys its the last choice and rare chance to get seelcted

  21. Mr.Chowla is right.. more than physical, biological and bla bla bla reasons its jus mere ego.. men don want women in competition wit them..

    And the chance u asked for.. its right in front of you.. sports!.. compete wit men in sports.. play the games better then men do.. it is so irritaing when i play wit my girl friends.. they bring the pace of the game drastically down.. and look at the physique of our country's girl'.. even in their youth they hardly have any muscle.. either thin or flubby..

    girls shud improve their physique.. even in gyms girls work out to reduce weight but not to build muscles.. a muscular girl might be peculiar.. but u people got to move on.. my mom is twice as strong as my friends and sisters.. WTF..

    i dunno how u are.. but if u want the chance its right in front of u.. next time when u play anythin wit ur guy friends try to do better than them physically.. in 6 months time if u cant beat a good male sportsman, in any one sport, consider ur post void..


  22. hi anu.. i accept that we should give equal priority to women.. but, the point is this is not the right ground.Even u have mentioned ab the physical prob which women face.. basically, women r considered as soft(in all sense).so,having such probs, we can't just give a chance for them to test whether they r capable or not. Don't mistake me. eat i mean is army is meant for our nation's security. so, we don't have a second chance over here.. thats y this sort of situation persists. hope u took my msg in right sense..!


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