Nepali Times
From The Nepali Press
Women in the army



The Royal Nepal Army has set up security check points at various points around the city. This is a positive step, keeping in mind the current situation, but some shortcomings just cannot be ignored. Owing to a lack of women security personnel, women passengers in public transport feel exceptionally uncomfortable when they have to undergo checks. Also, due to lack of women in the security forces, at some check points women get away by with just their bags being checked. At others they are searched by male security forces. Both approaches are wrong. At many points, people have to wait in long lines while security forces just check their bags and don't conduct body searches, so a person could get past with a concealed weapon.
According to the Nepali Constitution 1990, all citizens are equal in the eyes of the law. But women are still not allowed to join the Royal Nepal Army. The Army Act 2016 does not allow women to enlist. At one time, the Nepal Police Act didn't provide for women to enter the police force. But in 1981, a direct order from the Royal Palace allowed women to join the force. They compete to enter the force, and women police, from cadets to Deputy Superintendents of Police, are doing well there. They are less involved in controversies and cases of corruption. The recent Armed Police Act also allows women to join the force.

Women around the world have proven their skills in the armed forces. The US army is 15 percent female. The women there fly warplanes and serve in warships. Keeping in mind the current situation, Nepal's Army Act needs to be amended to allow women to join the forces. As long as the process of enrolling women in the army isn't completed, female police officers should be deployed to conduct security checks on women. It is extremely important for the council of ministers to make a decision to allow the enlistment of women in the armed forces.


LATEST ISSUE
638
(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)


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