Can't give women combat roles, Indian military chief Bipin Rawat strikes 'sexist' note

08:10 PM | 15 Dec, 2018
Can't give women combat roles, Indian military chief Bipin Rawat strikes 'sexist' note
NEW DELHI - Indian Army Chief, Bipin Rawat apparently struck a misogynistic note on Saturday and expressed that women were not ready for combat roles.

Bolstering his point, the military chief gave reasons like they [women] have the responsibility of raising kids and a woman officer would feel uncomfortable at the frontline and accused jawans of peeping as she changes clothes.

General Rawat said that he was ready to introduce women to combat roles, however, said the army may not be ready as most jawans come from villages and they may not accept a woman officer as a leader.

"Army would not be able to give her leave if she is the commanding officer as she can’t leave her unit for six months, but said objecting to the leave could create a ruckus," Rawat said in an interview with News18.

To a query why the army was not accepting women, the military chief replied that it was a misnomer.

Rawat also expressed that women in the battlefield could complain about jawans peeping.

"I am talking about isolation situation when she has 100 jawans around her but it happens here also in Delhi," the military chief said.

India's top commander expressed that if a lady is awarded a combat role then the maternity leave could be restricted which would create a ruckus.

Rawat, however, highlighted that the women were serving in different capacities in the force.

"We have women officers as engineers, they are doing mining and demining work. In air defence, they are manning our weapon systems. But we have not put women in frontline combat because what we are engaged in right now is a proxy war," he observed.