First Woman Army Officer To Win Gallantry Award Gets Permanent Commission
The first woman gallantry award-winning Army officer, Lt Col Mitali Madhumita, has been granted permanent commission in the armed forces as sanctioned by the Supreme Court on Wednesday. She was acknowledged and certified as an outstanding officer despite her last minute change of mind for a career.
The SC, in February 2015, had barred permanent commission for Madhumita following an order of the Armed Forces Tribunal. After the rejection, she had appealed against it. Her counsel Aishwarya Bhati represented her case to a bench comprising Chief Justice T S Thakur and Justices D Y Chandrachud and L N Rao, which was intended to clarify the terms of the officer who earlier couldn’t take permanent commission because of adverse matrimonial conditions.
While Madhumita had continued to serve in Army as a lieutenant colonel in Army education corps pursuant to the interim order of the apex court, the SC on October 15 last year supported the Union government’s order releasing Madhumita from service.
Contradicting her appeal, the Army advocate R Balasubramanian said that if she changes her mind after taking a decision, that is first accepting that she did not take permanent commission and then stand to take it up, it would be disregarding the policy and cadre management of the armed forces. Finally, Madhumita has been favoured by the bench.
Madhumita was awarded the Sena Medal (Gallantry) for her bravery during a terrorist attack on an Indian guest house in Kabul in February 2010. She was posted at Kabul, Afghanistan, and headed the Indian Army‘s English language training team there. During the fidayeen attack on the Indian embassy, Madhumita selflessly saved many lives. Three Army officers were killed. .Madhumita took care of the injured persons and rushed them off to the hospital.
Feature Image Credit: TOI
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