New Delhi: The Supreme Court questioned the Union government on Tuesday regarding recruitment of women into the National Defence Academy for 2022 restricted to 19, disregarding the top court's orders, PTI reported.
The court sought the government an explanation for resorting to the same number as last year. The bench of Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and M M Sundresh directed the government to submit the total number of candidates on record that appeared in the NDA entrance in 2021 for Rashtriya Indian Military College (RIMC) and Rashtriya Military School (RMS).
It gave the government three weeks to file an affidavit and asked the parties to file their rejoinder in two weeks. The court will further hear the case on March 6.
Last year, the government had informed the court that it was because of the lack of infrastructure that women recruitment was curbed to 19 seats.
According to an affidavit filed by a petitioner, 8009 candidates qualified for the NDA exam conducted on November 14, 2021, for the Service selection Board test and medical test. Out of qualified, 7,007 were men, and 1,002 were women. But according to the UPSC advertisement, NDA will take in 400 cadets in the current recruitment. Thus, the tally of women will only be 19.
It also argues that as per UPSC notices, there will be zero intakes of women candidates into the Navy, which is arbitrary and a violation of Articles 14,15,16 and 19 of the Indian Constitution.
It was in September last year, the Supreme Court allowed women to appear in the NDA examinations, although the government sought to hold woman induction for another year. The government had informed the court then that a team had been employed to study to facilitate the necessary system to accommodate women into the defence academy and said that women's entrance would be started from May 2022.