General Singh denies infighting within Army

General Singh denies infighting within Army

Nothing personal against Suhag

Days after issuing a show-cause notice to 3 Corps commander Lieutenant General Dalbir Singh Suhag, Army Chief General V K Singh denied speculations of infighting in the Army and said he did not have any personal scores to settle with Suhag.

“A show-cause based on facts was issued by a senior officer to a junior officer. It is the moral duty of the junior officer to respond rather than running to the media,” Gen Singh told reporters on Friday.

The Defence ministry, dissatisfied with the Army Chief’s action, has sought to know from the Army headquarters if Army Chief designate Lt Gen Bikram Singh was kept in the loop before such a vital decision was taken. Gen Singh threatened Lt Gen Suhag with a censure motion, believed to succeed Lt Gen Bikram Singh as the Chief of Army Staff after two years. Suhag has been given seven days time to respond.

Suhag came under fire for “botching up” a 2011 intelligence operation in Jorhat, Assam, in which an Army unit raided the house of Surojit Gogoi, an Army contractor.

The operation did not go as planned and one of the Havaldars took away a mobile phone and a fire arm. As these items were not returned to the police, Gogoi filed a police complaint and an Army inquiry ensued.

Gen Singh personally issued the notice to Suhag after the report by court of inquiry. But, he did not inform the Defence ministry.

A DV ban may spoil Suhag's chance to become an Army commander as his file is pending with the Appointment Committee of the Cabinet.

With Lt Gen Bikram Singh coming to the Army headquarters and Lt Gen Shankar Ghosh retiring on May 31, the posts of commanding officers of the eastern and western commands will be vacant. Suhag was widely believed to have replaced one of them.

Sources said Suhag still stands a chance if he approaches Defence Minister A K Antony for a reconsideration.

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