Over 100 officers of the Indian Army have moved the Supreme Court alleging discrimination in promotions of members of the services corps.
The petitioners, including lieutenant colonels and majors, have said that personnel from the Army's service corps are being deployed in operations, which they are not supposed to be part of, but are deprived of the promotions and benefits that should accompany it.
The service corps handles the army's logistics support and has nearly 10,000 officers, Scroll. in added.
"The action of the Army and the Union government in selectively treating officers of the service corps as 'operational' for the purpose of deployment in operational areas, but 'non-operational' for the purpose of being considered for promotion is violating the fundamental rights of the petitioners and other middle-level Army officers," the petition read, according to The Times of India.
It further added that members of the service corps do not enjoy immunity under the Geneva Conventions, according to The New Indian Express. "If caught on foreign soil, [the service corps] shall be tried not as soldiers but under the criminal law of the country," the petition said.
In February 2016, the Supreme Court had settled a petition filed by the service corps, which claimed that there were not enough colonel posts allocated for promotion. The controversy, as TNIE pointed out, began with the army's 2009 promotion policy, based on the recommendations of a committee headed by former defence secretary Ajai Vikram Singh. It was later challenged in the Armed Forces Tribunal.
The discontent still continues to simmer, as is evident from the recent legal twist in the case.
The officer mortality rate among the service corps in the Kargil War was 1.77 per thousand, which is more than any other component of the regular army.
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