SC to examine 'caste/region-based' recruitment in Army

The Supreme Court today agreed to hear a plea for its direction to abolish India Army's recruitment criteria for its duty soldiers, allegedly based on caste, region and religion.

A bench of justices K S Radhakrishnan and Dipak Misra asked the petitioner, a doctor of Rewari in Haryana, to supply the copy of the petition to the Solicitor General who will assist the court.

The petitioner I S Yadav submitted in his plea that unlike Air Force and Navy, there is "discriminatory classification" for recruitment on caste/religion/region basis and submitted that a national policy of recruitment be formed in the Army.

"At recruitment stage there cannot be caste-cum-religion-cum-region based classification. There cannot be specific recruitment on the basis of caste, region and religion to various regiments like Maratha Regiment, Rajasthan Rifles, Dogra Regiment, Jat Regiment, etc. This classification of the army is a British legacy and is not sanctioned by any law made by Parliament," the petitioner said.

"In Indian Air Force and in Indian Navy there is no such discriminatory classification of Squadrons/Fleets based on caste/religion/region and hence recruitment in Indian Air Force and Indian Navy is on all-India, all-class basis. Yet in Army alone there are caste/religion/region based regiments," the petitioner said.

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