SC asks IAF to consider 32 former SSC officers for permanent commissions to provide pension benefits

According to the Supreme Court, the Centre and the Indian Air Force should consider granting Permanent Commissions (PCs) to 32 retired women Short Service Commission officers based on their suitability to provide them with pension benefits.

Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud and justices Hima Kohli and J B Pardiwala refused to reinstate them because they were released from service between 2006 and 2009. “Reinstatement is not a viable option considering the exigencies of serving the nation,” the order stated.

According to the bench, women officers of the Indian Air Force will be eligible for a one-time pensionary benefit if the IAF finds them suitable for the grant of permanent commission.

As a result, the Chief Justice of India commended the IAF for taking a “fair approach” and instructed senior lawyer R Balasubramanian, appearing on behalf of the Centre and the Air Force, to express appreciation to the IAF chief and the government.

In granting relief to the former women IAF SSC officers, the bench noted that they entered the service between 1993 and 1998 with the legitimate expectation that they would be considered for permanent commission after five years.

However, they were not considered for the permanent service commission but received extensions of six and four years successively before being released from service between 2006 and 2009. By prevailing policy, women officers of the SSC had a legitimate expectation of receiving permanent commissions.

In exercising its extraordinary power under article 142 of the Constitution, the bench said, “We are of the view that pensionary benefits should be granted to these women SSC employees.”

IAF will examine the suitability of these retired officers and consider granting pensionary benefits once they are eligible for permanent commissions, as defined in the HR (Human Resources) policy. “The HR Policy of November 2010 will be applied to the appellants’ cases,” the court stated.
However, it was clearly stated that these officers were not entitled to salary arrears.

As of the date, the officers have completed 20 years of deemed service; pensions will be payable.

Additionally, the bench requested that the IAF consider the similar request of two widow officers on a sympathetic basis.

According to the top court’s judgment on February 17, 2020, women officers in the Army should be given permanent commissions, rejecting the Centre’s explanation of their “physiological limitations” based on sex stereotypes and gender discrimination.

As directed by the apex court within three months, all serving SSC women officers are to be considered for permanent commissions, regardless of whether they have served for 14 or 20 years.


Hi, my name is Nisha and I'm an educational journalist based in India. I've always been passionate about the power of education to transform lives, and that's what led me to pursue a career in journalism focused on this area. I completed my Bachelor's degree in English from Hindu College in Delhi in 2013 and then went on to earn my Master's in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Mass Communication in 2017. During my studies, I also completed several short-term courses on Education in India, Sociology, and other related subjects to deepen my knowledge in this field. I'm particularly interested in improving access to quality education in rural areas, where students often face significant challenges. I've worked on a number of initiatives to address this issue, including advocating for better policies, resources, and practices that can make a difference. As an educational journalist, I'm passionate about using my platform to highlight important issues in the education space. I've covered a wide range of topics, including the impact of technology in the classroom, innovative approaches to teaching and learning, and the challenges facing students from marginalized communities. One of the things I love most about my work is the opportunity to constantly learn and grow. I'm an avid reader and believe that reading is key to expanding one's knowledge and perspective. I'm always seeking out new ideas and insights to help me better understand the world around me. In summary, as an educational journalist, I'm dedicated to using my skills and expertise to make a positive impact in the field of education. I'm committed to improving access to quality education for all students and to using my platform to raise awareness about important issues in this area.

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