Maj Gen promoted 15 years after retirement

After the Tribunal order, Maj Gen Devendra Nath Verma, a former Signals officer who retired on September 30, 1995, will "notionally" become a Lt Gen and would be given all the penSince the petitioner has retired, he may be granted notional promotion to that of a Lt Gen with effect from October 1, 1995 and the financial consequences that would have accrued to him had he been in service, including that of pensionary benefits," a two-member Bench headed by Tribunal Chairperson Justice A K Mathur said in its order.

Demanding quashing of his retirement, Verma, who is in his early 70s, had petitioned that service extension of three months given to another officer, Lt Gen P D Bhargava (retd), was stage-managed, which denied him the opportunity for promotion to the rank of Lt Gen.

Verma also contended that the three-month extension given to Bhargava was not recommended by the Army but was granted suo motu by the Defence Ministry.      Agreeing with Verma's contention, the Tribunal said the granting of extension to Bhargava was "totally unjustified and ultra-vires".

The Tribunal said even a one day extension to Verma would have ensured retired Maj Gen’s promotion on October 1, 1995.Pointing out that the treatment meted out by the Army to Verma was "malafide and unfair", Justice Mathur said the extension granted to Bhargava had set forth a chain of events, which denied promotion to Verma, who was "otherwise fully eligible to become a Lt Gen in his own Corps".
"The extension enabled Bhargava to stay in service despite reaching the age of superannuation on January 31, 1994 and subsequently pick up his rank of Lt Gen on April 1, 1994, and finally side step as Signal Officer-in-Chief on February 1, 1995," it said.

The Tribunal, however, didn’t take any action against the extension of service granted to Bhargava as Verma had not sought it in his petition and has given 90 days to the Army to complete the exercise.

After his retirement, Verma had filed the case in the Delhi high Court and the petition was recently transferred to the Tribunal. sionary and financial benefits attached with the promotion.

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