The Delhi High Court on Tuesday stayed the retirement of a Colonel of the Judge Advocate General’s branch, posted at Bathinda, and asked the Armed Forces Tribunal (AFT) to decide his application regarding the result of his promotion board not being declared. He was scheduled to retire on September 30.
Colonel Mukul Dev had shot into limelight in 2017 when he had sent a legal notice to the then Defence Secretary over the issue of discontinuance of rations to Army officers. While the government continued with the provision of rations after receiving adverse feedback from the ground level, the Army punished Col Dev for his actions.
He was served a ‘displeasure’ by his Corps Commander for having allegedly violated Army’s rules and regulations by sending a legal notice to the Defence Secretary.
Colonel Dev would have ordinarily retired on September 30 as the AFT had earlier not given him relief in his petition in which he had sought a stay on his retirement till his matter was adjudicated. This happened despite the fact the AFT had stayed the retirement of a Brigadier of Army Medical Corps recently under similar conditions.
The promotion board for the rank of Brigadier had considered Colonel Dev’s candidature in December 2019 but his result was not declared.
The High Court ordered that the AFT should hear Colonel Dev’s petition, along with two other Colonel’s cases of the same JAG branch as they are interconnected, tomorrow itself, i.e. September 30.
“Till such consideration of the matter by the AFT and passing of order in pursuance thereto, the order of superannuation of the petitioner be not given effect too,” said the High Court order.
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