July 12, 2009 1:11:22 am
Capt Poonam Kaur had accused her seniors of sexual harassment
A General Court Martial (GCM) of the Army has sacked Captain Poonam Kaur of the Army Service Corps (ASC) for levelling false allegations of sexual harassment against her seniors.
The GCM at 5-Armoured Regiment in Patiala,held Jalandhar native Capt Kaur guilty on various counts,including levelling false allegations of physical and mental harassment against senior Army officers,disobeying orders of her Commanding Officer (CO),providing false information to get accommodation meant for married in Kalka,and discussing her service matters with the media,which is against the Army rules.
Last year,Capt Kaur had charged her seniors of physical and mental harassment ever since she was posted in Kalka in October 2007.
Following her allegations,the Army had set up a Court of Inquiry in July last year,which found her guilty on at least 20 counts. The GCM concluded on Friday and found Capt Kaur guilty and awarded the punishment of dismissal from service.
She was,however,acquitted of the charge of “an unbecoming conduct and character” with regard to having physical relations with her driver,Sepoy Sunil Kumar.
Capt Kaur had alleged that her Commanding Officer Col R K Sharma and Lt Col Ajay Chawla and Maj Suraj Bhan had physically and mentally harassed her after she spurned their advances.
She also charged them of keeping her in illegal confinement in her quarters in the Kalka military station.
“They used to call me to the office without any reason and force me to stay during late night parties,” she had alleged While Capt Kaur could not be reached,her counsel Col (retd) S K Aggarwal told Newsline: “This seems like a shut-up call by the Army to one and all to not level any such allegations in future. The Army has tried to convey a message that woman officers should not level such allegations against seniors.”
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