New Delhi: The sight of Indian women donning military uniforms to take part in combative and rescue operations in different parts of the country will be a reality soon. The Army on Thursday issued a notification for recruiting women into Military Police for the first time as they were until now inducted only for officer roles.

On Thursday, the Army released a notification inviting applications from women to fill 100 “Soldier general duty (Women Military Police)". The application is available online from April 25 to June 8.

This major breakthrough comes three months after the government announced that women would be recruited into force in the "Personnel Below Officer Rank" (PBOR) category. Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his Independence Day speech last year had announced that women officers would be recruited into armed forces under the Short Service Commission and will have the option of taking up permanent commission. The Prime Minister described the landmark move as a gift to India’s brave daughters.

Women will be inducted into the Corps of Military Police in graded manner to eventually comprise 20 per cent of the force. Their role will range from investigating criminal cases to assisting the Army in the field operations.

Besides the celebratory aspect of the decision, there are issues that relates to the capability of existing facilities in the Army to have women military police. This is raised by none another than Army Chief General Bipin Rawat. "It's because appropriate facilities have to be created for them," he felt. He said there was no comparison of Indian Army with that of Western countries because the latter are “more open”.