Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, December 2
An Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) court has tried and dismissed a Commandant from service and deprived him of all due financial benefits after holding him guilty on several counts of misappropriation of government property.
A General Force Court (GFC) had tried the officer on 20 charges under different sections of the ITBP Act and held him guilty on seven charges. The GFC awarded him one year’s rigorous imprisonment, dismissal from service and forfeiture of all arrears of pay and allowances and other public money due to him at the time of dismissal.
When the findings and sentence were sent to the ITBP Director General, the GFC’s convening authority, for confirmation, the punishment of rigorous imprisonment was remitted, but dismissal from service and forfeiture of financial benefits were upheld.
The findings and sentence as confirmed by the Director General were promulgated on December 1, and the officer was struck off the ITBP strength on the same day, according to sources.
A GFC in the ITBP is akin to a General Court Martial in the armed forces and has the powers to try any person subject to the ITBP Act for any offence defined in the Act and pass any sentence as mention therein.
The officer had been posted as Commandant (Staff) at Sector Headquarters, Srinagar, when the trail by GFC was ordered. He was thereafter attached to Sector Headquarters, Lucknow, for further proceedings.
The charges levelled against him were under provisions of Sections 33(b), 33(d) and 33(f) of the ITBP Act that deal with offences with respect to property, including misappropriation and intent to defraud, Section 34 for extortion and exaction, Sector 38 for falsifying official documents and making false declarations, Section 43 for violation of good order and discipline, Section 46 for abetment of commission of an offence and Section 26 for unbecoming conduct.
A Court of Inquiry had been ordered in 2019 by the Inspector General, Eastern Frontier, Lucknow, regarding the allegations pertaining to the period when the Commandant (equivalent to a Colonel in the Army) was posted under the jurisdiction of the Eastern Frontier Headquarters.
The trial, held first at the location of ITBP’s 39th Battalion in Noida and later at the force’s Service and Supply Battalion at Saboli in Haryana, concluded in August 2021.
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