O.A. No. 217/2009. Case: Brig. Rakesh Sharma Vs Union of India (UOI) and Ors.. Armed Forces Tribunal

Case NumberO.A. No. 217/2009
CounselFor Appellant: Party-in-Person and For Respondents: Balasubramanium, Adv. and Ankur Chibber, Adv.
JudgesA.K. Mathur, J. (Chairperson) and M.L. Naidu, Member
Judgement DateApril 08, 2010
CourtArmed Forces Tribunal


(Principal Bench, New Delhi)

  1. The applicant vide this original application has prayed for quashing of the letters dated 11.04.2007 and 08.12.2009 in which the applicant?s claim to the rank of Major General was rejected. It is also prayed that respondents may be directed to expunge the impugned Annual Confidential Report (ACR) covering the period September, 1999 to June, 2009 and grade "7? in the impugned ACR, reconsider the applicant for promotion to the rank of Major General from December, 2006, annul the policy letter of 07.03.2000 and Promotion Board proceedings of December, 2006.

  2. Brief facts of the case are as follows. The applicant was commissioned in the Army on 16.06.1974. He served with the dedication and also qualified in various professional courses. During his service he tenanted several important command and staff appointments. He was selected for foreign assignment also.

  3. The applicant was considered for promotion to Major General in December, 2006 along with the 1974 batch and was not approved. The applicant filed a Writ Petition (C) No. 5456 of 2007 in High Court of Jharkhand on being aggrieved by non- selection in December, 2007. The order was pronounced on 10.12.2008 remitting the matter back to the competent authority for fresh consideration and decision. It was directed that the competent authority shall consider the petitioner's representation giving point wise finding and shall pass a reasoned order in accordance with law within a period of two months of this order.

  4. A contempt petition was also moved by the applicant in the High Court of Jharkhand for not implementing the Court order dated 10.12.2008. The petition stood disposed of on 29.11.2009 when the respondents rendered unqualified apologies and sought time of three weeks to comply with the order.

  5. Meanwhile, the Central Government acting on a non- statutory complaint filed by the applicant on 25.03.2007 and additional inputs dated 11.06.2007 against his non-empanelment in December, 2006, which was converted to statutory complaint, gave partial redressal to the applicant, on 06.09.2007.

  6. Consequently, he was considered by the Special Selection Board for promotion as a fresh case of 1974 batch in December, 2007. He was again found unfit. Two Review Boards were also held for the applicant in May, 2008 and March, 2009. He was thus finally superseded. The applicant filed the present petition in December, 2009 as a consequence of his being finally superseded.

  7. The original application was permitted to be amended to reduce the number of respondents to 5 on 08.02.2010.

  8. The applicant pleaded his case in person. His first averment was that there was a pronounced bias by Brig. A.S. Jhala who was the Initiating Officer (IO) of the impugned report covering the period from September, 1999 to June, 2000. The IO had a personal bias even before he came to the station in his appointment as Deputy GOC. The IO?s family was living in Kota when IO was posted in Bathinda and the IO wanted the applicant to do the things which went against principles of the applicant and hence the bias. The applicant also averred that during his tenure under the IO he was detailed by the GOC to man the control during a war game. Brig. A.S. Jhala as officiating GOC wanted certain information from the applicant which he declined as per the professional propriety. This further aggravated the bias by Brig. A.S. Jhala against the petitioner. He further averred that Brig. A.S. Jhala had served the staff of 10 Corps and the Senior Reviewing Officer (SRO) Lt. Gen. G.K. Duggal was the Corps Commander. Therefore, the IO also influenced the SRO in giving his assessment on the lines of what the IO had written in the impugned ACR. In June...

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