ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Parity for the Military Nursing Service


Recently, there have been multiple significant judicial outcomes favouring women in the armed forces, such as granting of permanent commission and promotion to women officers and entry of women into the National Defence Academy. Yet, the plight of the Military Nursing Service (MNS) officers, the largest women corps in the Indian Army, remains largely unaddressed and unjustified.

The glaring inequity begins with the MNS officers’ inability to pen their own annual confidential reports, an exercise that is instead completed by doctors. In a shocking display of bias, this medical lobby has had a significant sway over the decision-making processes. The Sixth Central Pay Commission’s recommendation for pay parity for MNS officers with other army branches was objected to by the chief of army staff himself, a move incongruous with global trends. Notably, in the United States, nursing officer Dorothy Hogg served as the surgeon general of the Air Force, proving that nurses can ably manage medical personnel, including doctors.

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