For the first time, a serving Indian Army chief has accused a predecessor of stalling his promotion on baseless grounds.
Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Dalbir Singh Suhag accused Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh for delaying his promotion “with mysterious design, malafide intent and to arbitrarily punish” him for “extraneous reasons,” The Indian Express reported.
Submitting an affidavit to the Supreme Court, Dalbir claimed that in 2012, he was “sought to be victimised by the then COAS,” adding that the only reason behind it was to deprive him of a promotion to the position of army commander.
“False, baseless and imaginary allegations of lapses were levelled against me in the show cause notice” of May 19, 2012 and consequent imposition of an “illegal” discipline and vigilance (DV) ban, Suhag stated in his affidavit. Suhag filed the affidavit in response to a plea filed by Lt Gen Dastane alleging nepotism in Dalbir’s selection as army commander.
According to reports, the minister of state for external affairs had placed Suhag under a DV ban between April and May 2012 for alleged “failure of command and control” in an operation carried out by an intelligence unit working directly under him, while he was then commanding the Dimapur-based 3 Corps.