An Army jawan’s video, accusing officers of ill-treating soldiers, went viral on social media on Tuesday. The jawan identifies himself as Sindhav Jogidas in the video and complains about the quality of food served to them despite a huge defence budget. “Some officers of the Army consider jawans as their slaves. Jawans have to do everything. They have no other way. The one who speaks out is gone because Army rules are very strict… If we refuse to perform some duty or break a rule, we are fined. But when officers break rules, there are no rules,” he says.
Jogidas claims he tried to have his complaint registered with the Prime Minister, Defence Minister and Army headquarters but to no avail. He adds that instead, a court of inquiry was ordered against him and he was “harassed” for a year. He then wrote to Army chief General Bipin Rawat but got no reply. Jogidas, who was served a chargesheet for complaining and was fined, had slammed the ‘sahayak’ system.
The Army rubbished the allegations as baseless. It said in a release that they had investigated the matter and found that Jogidas had been found guilty of indiscipline twice during his three-year service.
Jogidas was late in rejoining duty after taking leave in 2015 while he was on his initial posting at Military Hospital (MH), Ranikhet. “Subsequently, while still at MH Ranikhet, he, while on duty at the ICU, refused to obey instructions of the Duty Nursing Officer to clean the bed pan of a bedridden patient at the hospital,” the release said. A one-man inquiry panel found his actions in violation of the chain of command and established chain of correspondence after Jogidas approached Army headquarters to complain against officers at MH, Ranikhet. The Army said the jawan had never been employed as sahayak.