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Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Are JCOs Gazetted Officers in the Indian Army

Army headquarters has officially clarified that JCOs are indeed gazetted officers.

The Indian Army has been at the center of a crucial debate regarding the status of Junior Commissioned Officers (JCOs) as gazetted or non-gazetted officers. This issue, significantly affecting the morale and career progression of a large section of Army personnel, calls for a deeper understanding and clarification. This article delves into the recent developments and clarifications provided by the Army on this matter.

Understanding the Classification

The distinction between gazetted and non-gazetted officers is significant in the Indian Army. Gazetted officers are higher in rank, enjoying privileges such as better pay scales and greater authority. Non-gazetted officers, in contrast, rank lower and do not share these benefits.

The Army’s Clarification

The issue of whether JCOs are gazetted officers has been contentious. In 2011, the Army classified JCOs as non-gazetted in response to an RTI query, leading to widespread dissatisfaction among JCOs. They argued that their roles and responsibilities justified gazetted status. Acknowledging this concern, the Army headquarters reversed the earlier stance in a landmark clarification, confirming that JCOs are indeed gazetted officers.

Implications of the Clarification

This reclassification has significant implications for over 64,000 JCOs across three ranks: Naib Subedar, Subedar, and Subedar Major. As gazetted officers, they now enjoy improved pay scales, greater authority, and a higher status within the Army’s hierarchy.

The Rank Parity Issue

This clarification is a crucial aspect of the ongoing debate on rank parity between military and civilian officers. The controversy escalated when the Ministry of Defence (MoD) attempted to equate military and civilian officers in terms of rank and pay in 2019, a move that was met with resistance from the armed forces.

The Role of JCOs in the Indian Army

JCOs are pivotal in the Indian Army, serving as a bridge between officers and soldiers. Promoted from the ranks of non-commissioned officers, they are crucial for leadership, guidance, and the welfare of the troops.


The Army’s decision to recognize JCOs as gazetted officers resolves a long-standing ambiguity and is a step towards enhancing their morale and motivation. As the MoD continues to explore the broader issue of rank parity, it is imperative that any decision made is just and respects the distinct nature of military service. This move not only upholds the dignity of JCOs but also reinforces their indispensable role in the Indian Army.

The Editorial Team at SSBCrack consists of professional writers, journalists and defence aspirants.
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  1. There is no post which carry grade pay 4200/- viz pay level 6 and are classified as gazetted officer in Govt of India. Secondly, gazetted officers are not entitled for non-productive link bonus, whereas JCOs viz Nb Sub, Sub and Sub Majors are getting Bonus every year by DMA, MoD order which is contradictory to their clarifications. It means if they are gazetted then bonus is being paid wrongly or if bonus is being rightly paid then their group status is wrong.

  2. Although our आर्मी jco are GOI but thair promotion standard not going through high class competition 90% Infantry jco are not so qualified and poor standard of education.infantry jco should go through completion all jco of Infantry competitive exam.only talented and inteligent NCO should pass in competitive exam for jco .jco promotion exam only battalion lavel exam and that why maximum spoon NCO become jco.i

  3. This is nothing new as all the promotion to the rank of JCOs are published in Gazette of India and certificate to this effect duly signed by President of India is given to the individual. However JCO rank has been degraded by Defence forces Offficiers to show their supremacy without understanding the experience of JCO rank. During actual war and war like situations experience plays major role. There should also be direct entry JCO and for this There is no need of new setup for their selection and the existing SSBs can recommend and seek options from border level competitors, JCOs so selected should be eligible for promotion upto the rank of Lt Col.


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