The Indian Army on Friday agreed to give permanent commission to 11 women officers after the Supreme Court warned army officials of contempt proceedings, Bar and Bench reported.

A bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and AS Bopanna was hearing a contempt petition by 11 officers who said they were eligible for permanent commission and yet were denied by the Indian Army.

The additional solicitor general, appearing for the Army, said that not just 11 of the 72 officers – who had approached the Supreme Court seeking permanent commission this year – but all the eligible applicants will be granted permanent commission, Live Law reported.

The Supreme Court asked the Centre to grant the permanent commission to the women officers within three weeks, NDTV reported.

“We appreciate the fair stand of army authority in putting at rest all outstanding issues pertaining to women SSC [Short Service Commission] officers,” the court said, according to Bar and Bench.

On October 22, the Centre had granted permanent commission to 39 women Army officers.

A permanent commission means a career in the Army till retirement while the Short Service Commission is for 10 years, with the option of either leaving or opting for permanent commission at the end of 10 years. If an officer does not get permanent commission, the officer can choose a four-year extension.

In a landmark verdict in February last year, the Supreme Court had directed that women officers in the Army be granted a permanent commission, rejecting the Centre’s stand of their physiological limitations as being based on “stereotypes” and “gender discrimination against women”.

The Army had constituted a special selection board in September 2020 to screen women officers. The results for this were declared in November 2020. Women who were not granted permanent commission had moved the Supreme Court.