Chandigarh, June 8
A general court martial (GCM) has held a lieutenant colonel guilty of maintaining an inappropriate relationship with a woman clerk while both were posted at the Indian Military Academy, Dehradun.
He has been awarded forfeiture of three years’ seniority of rank, forfeiture of three years’ service for the purpose of substantive rank of lieutenant colonel, forfeiture of three years’ service for increased pay and a severe reprimand, sources said.
The GCM, presided by Col Harpreet Singh with Lt Col Gourav Verma as the judge advocate and Col Virender Singh (retd) as the prosecution counsel, had been convened by Major General Sanjeev Khatri, General Officer Commanding, Uttarakhand Sub Area, and concluded on Wednesday.
According to sources, the officer was tried on three charges under Section 45 of the Army Act for behaving in a manner unbecoming of his position and the character expected of him as an officer, and under Section 63 for committing an act prejudicial to good order and military discipline.
Giving details of the charges, sources said the officer had fraternised with the woman clerk and entered into an amorous relationship with her knowing well that she was married, posed as her husband during her clinic visits for assisted reproductive procedure and improperly getting a dependent card made for the woman by showing her to be his wife.
The charges relate to the period between August 2017 and December 2019, when the officer held the rank of a major. He was promoted as lieutenant colonel in December 2018. A complaint was made against the officer in 2020.
The officer had initially pleaded not guilty to the charges levelled against him and had objected to the charges, raised a plea to jurisdiction of the GCM to try him and raised plea in bar. These objections were rejected by the court.
The prosecution had presented electronic evidence in support of the charges, which included details of WhatsApp chats and recordings of telephone conversations between the officer and the woman clerk.
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