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Woman officer who led Obama’s guard of honour wins fight to stay in Indian Air Force (video)

Wing Commander Pooja Thakur has scored another first - a military tribunal court has reinstated her position with the Indian Air Force.  Thakur first shot to fame as the first Indian woman officer to lead a guard of honour to a foreign head of state. In 2015, she did the honours for the visiting US President Barack Obama.  However, the Indian Armed Forces does not extend permanent commission to women officers traditionally.

Staff correspondent, NewsCrunch

Wing Commander Pooja Thakur has scored another first - a military tribunal court has reinstated her position with the Indian Air Force.

Thakur first shot to fame as the first Indian woman officer to lead a guard of honour to a foreign head of state. In 2015, she did the honours for the visiting US President Barack Obama.

However, the Indian Armed Forces does not extend permanent commission to women officers traditionally.

Once Thakur reached the end of her temporary commission, she was asked to leave.

The officer appealed at a military court, reports India Today. But before her case could be heard, she was forced to retire as her employment term got over in a month.

The military tribunal's judgement came through yesterday, reinstating Thakur. However, the court denied to pay any back wages to her for the time she was discharged by the Air Force.

In another victory for women in the Armed Forces, the court pulled up the Air Force for being insensitive to the potential of women officers, as evidenced by senior Air Force officers denying Thakur's plea of permanent commission.

The court urged the Air Force to consider her request for permanent commission with fairness and sympathy and without resorting to prejudice.

If a permanent commission is granted, it would allow the illustrious Wing Commander to rise to higher ranks in the establishment and to retire at 60 with full benefits. 

It would also undoubtedly be a giant step for much needed gender equality in the armed forces.

Pooja Thakur leading Obama's Guard of Honour (video)

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