Major Leetul Gogoi, the Army officer involved with using a human shield on his military jeep during the 2017 Srinagar bypoll, will be posted out of the Kashmir Valley as he has completed his tenure there.
The Indian Express had earlier reported that Gogoi had been punished by the Army with loss of seniority of six months following court martial proceedings as a punishment for “fraternising” with a local woman in a Srinagar hotel in May 2018.
Territorial Army soldier Sameer Malla, who was found with Major Gogoi in that hotel was also punished by a court martial.
The court martial had found Major Gogoi guilty of “fraternising” with a local in violation of official orders on the subject and for “being away from the place of duty while in operational area”.
“Major Leetul Gogoi shall be posted out as normal posting. Not being shunted out as some media is reporting.
He was posted to RR unit on March 2016 and was posted out on October 2018. From October 18, he was posted to V Force for additional time pending inquiry and action. The period of posting makes it clear he has done a normal tour of duty that is between two and two-and-a-half years,” an Army statement said.
The court martial followed the recording of summary of evidence against the officer after the Army Court of Inquiry (CoI) had recommended disciplinary action against Major Gogoi for the Srinagar hotel incident.
On May 23, 2018, Major Gogoi was detained by police following an altercation with the hotel staff when he was allegedly trying to enter inside with an 18-year-old Kashmiri woman.
The woman had expressed her unwillingness to depose during the court martial proceedings and informed the Army authorities that she had given a statement before a magistrate and the same should be treated as her final stand.
The woman had also stated that she had gone out with Major Gogoi of her own will, besides disclosing that she had become a friend of the Army officer through his fake Facebook profile, where he had named himself Ubaid Arman.
Immediately after the incident came to light last year, Army chief Bipin Rawat had said that exemplary punishment would be given to Major Gogoi if he was found guilty of “any offence”.
“If any officer of the Indian Army is found guilty of any offence, we will take strictest possible action,” General Rawat had said.