All personnel are combatant: Army
The Army on Thursday made it clear that it considers all personnel of services as combatant, saying Army performs its role in war and peace as a whole and not in isolated compartments.
The issue was raised at the ongoing Army Commanders' Conference during which some personnel from Army Service Corps (ASC) have expressed their views that since they are noncombatants they should not be considered for posting to field areas.
Responding their concern, the Army on Thursday recalled its affidavit to the Supreme Court on a jawan's plea filed against his posting to counter-insurgency unit Rashtriya Rifles, a combat unit, whereas the Army considered him a noncombatant for promotion purpose.
The Army in its affidavit said, "To boost strength essential in Line of Control, Low Intensity Conflict, Counter Insurgency and Counter Terrorist environment a number of Officers, JCOS and Other Ranks from Combat Support Arms and logistic units are posted on tenure basis in infantry.
This also provides much necessary operational experience to these Officers, JCOS and Other Ranks. It is submitted that their performance in such roles has been noteworthy." Combat arms, combat support arms and services are operational entities of Army which has clear and defined roles with charter of duties, it added.
It was never in dispute that all arms and services are combatants. Hence, at no stage has the Army referred to Services Units being noncombatant Units, the affidavit said.
It also stated that the Chief of Army Staff on assuming the appointment had mentioned that he would consider all arms and services at par and they would get their dues that they deserve.
"The anguish amongst some personnel on discrimination in their status, needs to be put to rest and the COAS has assured that necessary corrections, where needed will be addressed," said. (AGENCIES) it