One Colonel, Lt Colonel and Subedar Major of Army’s Corps of Electronics and Mechanical Engineering (EME) are facing Summary General Court Martial (SGCM) over charges of financial misappropriation in Akhnoor near Jammu.
The joint court martial of the Colonel H P S Sidhu and the Lt Colonel Ranjit Singh, a former commanding officer of 610 EME Battalion and OC of a workshop, respectively, will begin Tuesday in Akhnoor. The trial of the Subedar Major is likely to begin a few days later.
Brig Rahul Dev Sharma is the Presiding Officer of the trial along with four other officers. Sources in Army’s Northern Command informed that the first charge against the two officers is under Section 52 (b) of the Army Act for selling 200 trees in the unit area to civilians contrary to standing orders.
The second charge is also under Section 52 (b) for misappropriation of technical financial grants meant for repair and maintenance of vehicles and equipment of the Division, including IT equipment, to the tune of Rs 57 lakh approximately. A third charge relates to misappropriation of condiments allowance for jawans amounting to Rs 1.86 lakh.
Lt Col Ranjit has also been charged under Section 63 of the Army Act for failure of proper command and control leading to extraction of money from jawans of the unit by the Subedar Major.
The Subedar Major is also facing similar charges pertaining to tree selling, misappropriation of condiment allowance and extraction of money from jawans. Sources say the Colonel, Lt Colonel and Subedar Major have denied all the charges levelled against them and proclaimed their innocence in the Court of Inquiry and the Summary of Evidence held previously.
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