Vol. XLII No. 51 December 23, 2018

AIDWA Condemns Army Chief’s Statement on Women

The All India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA), in a statement issued on December 18, has strongly condemned the totally unwarranted sexist remarks recently made by Army chief Bipin Rawat on the question of women being inducted into combat roles in the army. While AIDWA is wholly opposed to the brazen militarism that high-ups in the army are found to voice frequently in public in recent times, it is even more obnoxious to find them exposing with impunity their utterly insulting and warped attitude not only to women aspiring towards a military career but to women in general.

His remarks show that instead of trying to ensure that even an army camp is a friendly workplace where men and women can execute their duties with security and dignity, he is promoting a nightmarish picture of army morality with such places teeming with potential peeping toms. It is also a comment on how high-ups in the army still continue to look down upon women by regarding their reproductive role as their primary role notwithstanding the fact that over the generations women have been engaged in carrying out many different kinds of challenging work outside home and family with courage and commitment.

“What we specially deplore is that this kind of an ideologically loaded public statement from the highest ranks is likely to reinforce the same attitude towards women within the army and across the country,” the statement said. AIDWA demanded that he withdraw his words and apologise for them.