Karnataka High Court dismisses Army's appeal

The Karnataka High Court today dismissed a writ appeal filed by the Army challenging a single judge's order directing it to consider an application of an officer seeking discharge from service so that he can marry a Sri Lankan national.

A division bench headed by Chief Justice Vikramajit Sen dismissed the appeal imposing a cost of Rs 75,000 on the Army. The court, in its order, observed that the Major could not have been refused permission by the Army so that he could marry a Sri Lankan national as the single judge had already directed the Army to release him from service.

Major Vikas Kumar of Corps of Signals, a resident of Koramangala here, sought to marry Arnila Rangamali Gunaratne, who also resided in the same area. Trouble started when he sought permission from his seniors to marry her. His application was rejected by the Army on September 19 last year, stating that the application was not correct.

When the Major moved the High Court, Justice B S Patil on December 7, last year admitted the petition and directed the Army to consider his application and relieve him.
When the Army did not respond to the directions, Kumar filed another petition which came for hearing before Justice H N Nagamohan Das, who on June 18, quashed the Army order rejecting his application.

The Army, however, appealed against the single judge order which came for hearing before the division bench headed by the Chief Justice. During the hearing, counsel for the Union Government Aniyan Joseph submitted that the application of the Major was not considered by his superiors as the girl had not given her consent to take up Indian citizenship and that the Major might end up being relieved without terminal benefits.

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