The navy will also challenge a recent order of the Delhi High Court which had reprimanded it over the issue of permanent commission for women in the force. "Except where an aircraft is required to be stationed on the ship overnight, like aircraft carrier, rest of flying areas will be open to the women," Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar today said after his closed-door address at the ongoing Naval Commanders' Conference here.
He said an announcement is likely to be made to this effect in the next few days. The navy has mooted a proposal to the Defence Ministry for induction of women as pilots for its fleet of maritime reconnaissance aircraft.
Parrikar stressed that one should not confuse the decision of the navy to open its doors for women with the recent order of the Delhi High Court. In a major relief for women naval officers, the Delhi High Court had on September 4 allowed a batch of petitions seeking permanent commission for them in the force, saying 'sexist bias and service bias' would not be allowed to block progress of women.
The court, while granting their plea, said the 'women are here to stay' and since they 'work shoulder-to-shoulder' with their male counterparts, it would 'frown upon any endeavour to restrain the progress of women'.

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