Recently the whole of India celebrated to the news of granting permanent commission for women in all branches where they are eligible for short service commission. To add to it, the Indian Army has announced that it will commission its first batch of women soldiers in 2021. On the other hand, two women navy aviators will operate from a warship; they will be the first air combatants to stay on and operate from the deck once deployed.
It’s indeed soothing to the ears of many women who aspire to take up jobs in uniform and who really want to make the society change its perception of women. It’s no more a gendered job anymore. At the same time, much is being done to encourage more women to join the forces with the MHA issuing advisories to raise the representation of women in state police and central paramilitary police forces to 33 percent in the year 2009 and 2012.
But the scenario of our state is very much different. In the recently concluded APPSC examination too, Arunachal failed to get a single female DSP. In fact, if we pay a closer look, until now the APPSC has only a single lady DSP through direct recruitment. Does this mean that Arunachalee females are lagging behind the males, or do they fear to break the traditionally constructed notion that police job is after all a ‘man’s job’?
When we go by facts, most of the time it’s the females who have a higher ratio in cracking this prestigious PCS and it clearly shows that our girls are no less than the males. The reason is the huge disparity in the recruitment process amongst females and males in the physical requirements.
To become a DSP in Arunachal through direct recruitment, a female, both APST and non-APST, has to have an average height of 158 cms, whereas in case of males there is a 5 cm concession for male APSTs against non-APSTs, zeroing it to 160 cms. If this is not inequality in the recruiting process then what is?
Most of the females, even though they aspire to become DSPs, are deprived first of all in the requirement of height itself. Other physical requirements can be achieved through practice and perseverance, but what about this permanent disability of height that deters an aspiring candidate from even going through the physical test? Even a state like Haryana, which is among the top states having the tallest people in India, keeps their basic height requirement as 157.5 cms, leave alone the rest of the states.
In short, the physical requirements for females are way too high for a female APST, wherein the average height itself is 150 cms in a state like Arunachal. The APPSC and the ministry concerned has done very little work to stop this widening gap in the recruitment process. They are not only creating inequalities in terms of deprivations in employment but denial in opportunities as well.
Had they rectified the recruitment rule (RR), maybe Arunachal could have got a good number of female DSPs in the recently concluded exam itself. Therefore, it’s an earnest request to the Pema Khandu-led government and the APPSC to implement the new rectified RR within this year itself that had been already sent by the police headquarters, Itanagar, to the APPSC.
With the prelims ahead within a month, implementing the new RR for physical requirement will also boost many female aspirants to incline towards joining the state police service, as well.
A female aspirant