AG branch yet to comply with Ministry's directive on age issue

AG branch yet to comply with Ministry's directive on age issue

The Adjutant General's branch is yet to respond to Defence Ministry's letter asking it to correct Gen V K Singh's date of birth on its records as May 10, 1950 ahead of the Supreme Court hearing and and not a year later as contended by him.

In its letter, the Defence Ministry had asked the AG branch to correct its records and have May 10, 1950 as Army chief's date of birth and sought a compliance report in this regard at the earliest possible.

Official sources said today that it has not received any response from the AG's branch in this connection.

Curiously, the Defence Ministry's letter to the AG branch, the official record keeper of date of birth, carried no date and the sources said that the Ministry's directive was conveyed to the AG branch on January 23, a week after Gen Singh had filed his writ in the Supreme Court.

The Ministry's undated letter rejected the AG branch's apprehension that the July 21, 2011 office memorandum of the Ministry directing the correction of Army Chief's age as May 10, 1950 "is not legally infirm and hence any apprehension expressed in this behalf has no basis".

"In view of the above, the contents of this Ministry's OM dated 21st July, 2011 may please be noted for guidance and strict compliance without any further loss of further time and a compliance report be sent to this Ministry at the earliest," the Ministry letter said.

The Ministry letter recalled that the Statutory Complaint filed by Gen Singh seeking withdrawal of the July 21, 2011 directive of the Ministry has been disposed off by the Ministry on December 30, 2011.

The Ministry said the redressal sought by the General has not been granted and that his "officially-recognised" date of birth will continue to remain May 10, 1950 and there are no grounds for interfering with the Defence Ministry directive of July 2011.

The Ministry also rejected the contention that no inquiry had been conducted by the Army Headquarters nor had AG's branch been co-opted or kept informed about it.

It maintained that as early as January, 2008 Gen Singh was informed about the date of birth after a "detailed examination in consultation with AG's branch".

The sources said that its letter received by the AG's branch on January 23 was not a fresh directive and was written in response to an advise sought by the branch in August.

They said the AG branch had raised certain issues with the Ministry over changing its records after it issued an order on July 21.

The sources said the Ministry had not communicated any advice to the AG branch in August last year since at that time a statutory complaint was filed by Gen Singh.