Indian Army: News & Discussion

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Muppalla
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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby Muppalla » 25 Jan 2012 08:04

Did SC accept the law suit from VKS? Generally how long these type of cases take for the judgement to come?

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby Virupaksha » 25 Jan 2012 08:38

Muppalla wrote:Did SC accept the law suit from VKS? Generally how long these type of cases take for the judgement to come?

They didnt accept yet. I dont think the date of hearing for acceptance has come out .

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby nelson » 25 Jan 2012 10:15

The DoB case is listed for being taken up in SC on 3rd Feb.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby Austin » 25 Jan 2012 10:34

A matter of Honour vs Propriety - The Twist in the Tale
By Raj Chengappa

Deep in the bowels of South Block, there are two key branches of the Army that have a key role in determining whether General Vijay Kumar Singh, Chief of Army Staff, was right in appealing to the highest court in India to have his date of birth corrected in the records.

The headquarters of both these branches in Delhi are walking distance from each other. Just two flights of stairs away to be precise. Yet the lack of communication between the two over Singh’s date of birth appears to have resulted in the most messy public confrontation between the Army Chief and the Union of India.

On the ground floor of South Block is the Military Secretary's (MS) Branch close to what is known as the Library Section. The MS Branch is responsible for overseeing all annual confidential records, postings and promotions of commissioned officers and maintains their personal files.

On the second floor is the Adjutant General's office that, among other things, is responsible for manpower planning, recruitment and storage of all records of Army personnel. Since there are over 1 million personnel in the Army, the records section is located in West Block No. 3 in RK Puram, around 9 km away.

Two don’t tally


The labyrinthine chambers of these two behemoths may hold the clue to why both these branches of the Indian Army have been maintaining different dates of birth ever since Vijay Kumar Singh was commissioned on 14 June 1970 — almost 42 years ago. While the MS Branch maintains that the Army Chief's date of birth is 10 May 1950, the AG's Branch in its records has it as 10 May 1951 — exactly a year's difference.

As had been mentioned in Part 1 and 2 of The Tribune series on the Army Chief's Age Row, there was a curious set of circumstances that led to two sets of dates being maintained by two major branches of the Army. This despite these two branches having one of the most elaborate systems of record keeping in the country, maintaining even the smallest detail of all personnel.

In the Army Chief's ‘Record of Service’ maintained by the AG's Branch, for instance, apart from his date of birth (shown as 10 May 1951), it has his educational qualifications, his date of commissioning, every single course he took, all his postings and promotions, the combat theatres he served in (over half a dozen of them), his marriage (to Bharti on 25 June 1975 in Bhiwani), his children (Mrinalini and Yogja with their date of births), his illnesses (among them a nasal allergy on 18 June 1991) and his awards and decorations (12 of them).

In Part 2, there is record of every financial transaction he has made exceeding Rs 10,000, including purchases of electronic goods or cars apart from land and buildings acquired.

Despite the elaborate records that the Army collects, when it comes to errors concerning the date of birth, there has been remarkably little dispute. On 17 November 2011, the RTI Cell of the Army in reply to a query stated that there have been only five cases of changes of birth dates of Army officers since 1947. Three of them were decided by a court order and in one case concerning a Lieutenant General, it took 36 years for him to get relief.

In Vijay Kumar Singh's case, as mentioned in the earlier parts of the series, the problem occurred right from the beginning when he claims he "inadvertently" entered his date of birth as 10 May 1950 in the original UPSC form that he had filled up while applying for the National Defence Academy (NDA) examination on 29 July 1965. The minimum qualification for entering the NDA is passing the Class X (matriculation) examination. But candidates like Singh who were appearing for theClass X examinations before the course began in July 1966 could also apply subject to them having provided proof that they had cleared the exams.

Elusive certificate

As proof of the date of birth, Rule 136 of the Army Manual states that the age recorded in the enrolment form of a person shall be in conformity with the date given in the matriculation certificate or equivalent examination. Or if no date of birth is shown on the certificate, then a school transfer/leaving certificate could be submitted or a certificate from the headmaster giving the exact age as recorded in the school admission file.

In Singh's case, as he was yet to pass his Matriculation, he states that his father, Colonel Jagat Singh, who was then serving at 14 Rajput Regiment, had his Officer Commanding issue a certificate that was submitted to the UPSC before he did the NDA exams in December 1965. Singh did his Class X Board examinations in March 1966.

In May 1966, the NDA results were declared ahead of the Class X results and Singh was among those who passed. As part of the requirement he states he submitted to the UPSC a provisional certificate attested by his school, Birla Public School, Pilani, that showed his date of birth to be 10 May 1951. On 18 June 1966, the UPSC sent him a letter pointing out the discrepancy in the date of birth as compared to the form he had filled up for the NDA examination and requested him to clarify the correct date of birth.

With his Class X Board examinations just out and the original certificate expected to come only after six months, Singh got his school principal to issue a Secondary School Transfer Certificate that certified that he had passed the X Board examinations and that his date of birth was 10 May 1951. He stated that along with a covering letter from his father he personally handed over the certificate to the UPSC office in Delhi on 29 June 1966.

Singh believed that the UPSC had accepted the change and hence he was permitted to join the NDA. As proof that he had delivered such a letter, in his statutory complaint to the Union of India in August 2011 (the first time an Army Chief had resorted to such a plaint), Singh attached a copy of the stamped receipt that the UPSC gave him.

Among the points made by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) in its order of 30 December 2011 rejecting the Army Chief's statutory complaint was that he had produced no proof to show that the UPSC had issued a formal letter correcting the discrepancy. The MoD also pointed out that the UPSC in its files had no record of any communication it had with Singh or his father with regard to the matter.

Why the mix-up

So how then did the two branches of the Army, MS and AG, end up with varying dates on their records? The answer may lie in the numerous forms that the Army requires when a candidate is selected for the NDA and enters the Academy. This forms the basis of his future records. After passing the written examination, a candidate has to appear before a Service Selection Board (SSB) where apart from being interviewed by a panel of officers he also has to pass intelligence, psychological and physical endurance tests.

In Singh's case, since he had opted for the Air Force as his first choice, he was sent to the SSB in Dehradun. As soon as he arrived on 9 May 1966, as part of standard procedure, he was asked to fill up Form SP-103. This asked for details such as UPSC roll number, name, height, identification marks, date and place of birth, particulars of his parents, educational qualifications, references and home address. In that form Singh filled up his date of birth as 10 May 1951.

Simultaneously, another Form SP-44 is filled up by a Junior Commissioned Officer (JCO) that is to test the candidates. The data such as name, date of birth and other details are taken from the candidate’s UPSC form. In this form, Singh's date of birth is entered as 10 May 1950 reflecting what he had filled up in his original Application form. This form is also dated as 9 May 1966, the same day that Singh filled up his SP-103 form.

If the candidates were successful, as Singh was, the SP-103 form filled up by them were then sent for "verification of character and antecedents" to revenue and police officials of the district essentially the District Magistrate, the District Superintendent of Police (SP) and the SP (CID). Singh claims that since the SP-103 form also contained his date of birth these officials had verified it. But the MoD in its order pointed out that this was mainly for character verification and could not be taken as authentication of his birth records.

The SP-103 is sent to the NDA where it becomes part of the Dossier of the candidate. After completion these are sent to the IMA, where a fresh set of Dossiers are compiled. Singh joined the IMA in July 1969 and while filling up the forms in the 'Record of Particulars' Singh wrote his date of birth as 10 May 1950. He was then 18 or 19 years of age depending on which date of birth is considered and can no more claim to be a minor. In his complaint, he states that the instructions were to fill the application form "as per the UPSC application form.”

Mounting evidence

The General claims he then got the IMA to write to his school and have the correct date of birth attested. The MoD, in its order, pointed out that IMA records showed no such communication with the school or that it had corrected the records on the basis of such communication. The MoD also pointed out that the IMA's Dossier, Record of Particulars, Final Assessment and Confidential report also showed Singh’s date of birth as 10 May 1950, which indicated that no correction had been made.

Singh counters such statements by citing the fact that his ID card (IC 24173) issued by the IMA, which he has to carry throughout his years of service, has his date of birth as 10 May 1951. The MoD's explanation is that the data is taken from the SP-103 form which Singh himself had filled up when he went to the SSB. But the MoD is hard put to explain why there was no verification done by the IMA when its other records had a contradictory date of birth.

There is one more form that is critical to the entire row. When a candidate passes out of the IMA and is commissioned into the Army, he is assigned to a Unit. As soon as he reports for duty, he fills up an IAFZ-2041 form which is the basic ‘Record of Service’. The details filled up in the form are to be authenticated by an officer of the unit. In Singh's case he is commissioned on 14 June 1970 and sent to the 14 Rajput, an infantry battalion, stationed in Delhi and in his IAFZ-2041 form he writes 10 May 1951 as his date of birth and this is authenticated by his Unit officer.

No authentication

In its order, the MoD charges Singh with “not correctly representing his date of birth”. Relying on advice given by Goolam Vahanvati, Attorney General of India, the MoD points out that the annexure to the IAFZ-2041 states: “Officers will ensure that particulars given by them are correct and agree with those given by them in the original application for the grant of commissioning ie UPSC.” The MoD concludes that “in the absence of authentication of 10 May 1951 as the date of birth, its basis for the Record of Service cannot be accepted.”

All these forms and dossiers are then sent to the MS Branch where they become part of the record in a register. A copy is also sent to the AG's Manpower Planning Unit 5 & 6, which is the repository of all commissioned officers records. The AG's Recruiting Directorate also sends the SP-44 form to MS Branch.

Vahanvati in his advice to the MoD on 11 May 2011 pointed out that when Singh was commissioned, there were four documents that showed his date of birth as 10 May 1951. These are: SP-103 which he filled up at the SSB, the autobiography he wrote in the NDA, the Record of Service taken from particulars he had filled up and the school transfer certificate. Vahanvati points out that of these four documents, three had been written by Singh himself.

Of the documents that show his date of birth being 10 May 1950, two of them were written by Singh himself — the UPSC form and his dossier in the IMA. The note of commissioning dated 22 January 1971 also lists the same date.

To further disprove Singh's contentions, Vahanvati points out that within the AG Branch itself there are two sets of dates being maintained. He states that the AG Recruiting Directorate, which is tasked with verifying the date of birth, has a noting of 4 May 1971 that also shows the date of birth as 10 May 1950 — this is nearly one year after Singh gets commissioned into the Army. Vahanvati further states that in this noting "it is also confirmed that the date of birth and educational qualifications of the cadets submitted to the NDA were verified by the UPSC."

The MoD in its order mounts further evidence in the form of the mandatory Gazette notification with respect to the 45th Regular Course of the IMA that Singh belonged to. His date of birth in this vital document is recorded as 10 May 1950. The MoD points out that the file was initiated by the MS Branch, it was seen and vetted by the AG's Recruiting Branch, the Controller General of Defence Accounts (CGDA), and finally approved by the Ministry itself.

Further, the MoD points out that two of Singh's coursemates had queries about their date of birth and these were rectified. In the case of Baldev Singh Dhaliwal (IC24292), his date of birth was corrected and AK More, another coursemate of Singh, the CGDA sought verification of the date of birth as no indication was given in his application form regarding its verification. Significantly, the MoD adds, "No such observation was made" with regard to Singh.

The MoD's point was that if there was some ambiguity about Singh's date of birth record, it would have been pointed out then. When the MoD published the draft notification in the Gazette of India (No. 2558 dated 18 September 1971), next to Singh's name it showed his date of birth as 10 May 1950.

Singh's counter is that his commission was "provisional" as his matriculation certificate had yet to be submitted because of a peculiar turn of events. The original certificate, he states in his petition, went wrongly to his father's unit. As he had been transferred out, the postal department sent it to his village address where it lay till Singh went home in 1971 and discovered it. He said he promptly sent the original certificate through his company unit and after that his commission was regularised.

The MoD dismisses his assertion and points out that his commission in the draft gazette notification clearly mentions that he was a "regular commissioned" officer. Then, when the Army List 1974-75 is published, the most authentic document listing those who had been commissioned, Singh's name figures and his date of birth is mentioned as 10 May 1950.

Under Army rules, Singh has to request a correction within two years of its publication after which he forfeits the right to do so. The General makes no such official and formal request till 2006 by which time the MoD says it is too late to make any changes and his appeal had been timed out.

Tomorrow: The General fights back

ramana
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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby ramana » 25 Jan 2012 10:39

So essentially the MS bracnh in its ivory tower records the incorrect date and every one has to pay for that error of commission! How absurd as if it can make no mistakes. Also how come the AG branch made the correction but not the MS branch? The fault is with the MS branch and how it maintains its records in isolation and in error.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby nelson » 25 Jan 2012 10:49

Actually that is not the case with MS branch alone. The quagmires of MoD & service headquarters are so deep and wide that branches get stuck to their position and do not see an issue from the other's POV.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby Yayavar » 25 Jan 2012 10:53

right...but why is the MoD insisting on this discrepancy being followed and continued since it has had no bearing on his promotion? It does effect the length of his tenure - and hence all the speculation of motive.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby geeth » 25 Jan 2012 11:12

^^

Further, as per service rules if the MoD had concluded that 1950 is the year of birth, then why ask the general to reconfirm and accept 1950 as his YoB? If the MS branch had maintained 1950 as YoB, then why his recorations and promotions record 1951 as YoB?

Why should non-reconcilliation of data affect the concerned officer? Even if the General had committed error in the past, his service records show 1951 as YoB. Why not accept it?

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby chackojoseph » 25 Jan 2012 12:24

Why Birth certificate is not coming into picture? IIRC, when I first pointed out (even before we learn't that he had this confusion himself of his YOB) those days, either Birth Certificate was not there or people fiddled with YOB to show their kin of a lower age, folks shouted me down that "his father was a general and his DOB has been recorded yada yada...." Now, why hospital record, panchayat record etc are not surfacing? Why are not his fathers peers (uniform or otherwise) speaking up that "My bittoo / Bitya was born in same year as VKS etc etc."

IMO, MoD will now try to figure out if his fathers "causality report" has a back up of VKS DOB proof. IMO, they will go the whole hog and investigate it. DOB can be added with mere affidavit (in case no record exists).

Since, the school leaving certificate itself is under cloud, this case will drag down to a longer period.

Hopefully VKS has his original DOB from Village panchayat, Hostiptal where he was born etc.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby nelson » 25 Jan 2012 12:29

^This is a classic instance of skullduggery on the part of govt and media. How many of them will still need to realise that VKS was born in MH Pune and the issuing authority for birth certificate is Pune Cantonment Board?
The next thing you(DDM) and they (govt) are going to suggest is Carbon-14 dating?

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby chackojoseph » 25 Jan 2012 12:32

nelson wrote:^This is a classic instance of skullduggery on the part of govt and media. How many of them will still need to realise that VKS was born in MH Pune and the issuing authority for birth certificate is Pune Cantonment Board?
The next thing you(DDM) and they (govt) are going to suggest is Carbon-14 dating?


Part of the Job and debate sir. I also said that "hope he has those documents." It doesn't meant, I am accusing him off anything.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby nelson » 25 Jan 2012 13:05

A very well written post on DoB issue and the larger picture of govt's omissions.
http://indiamydreamland.blogspot.com/2012/01/chief-vs-mischief-question-of-civil.html

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby rohitvats » 25 Jan 2012 13:51

It seems that MOD has supplied the entire dossier to Raj C. to put forth their point on the case. There seems to be a clear strategy here-use lesser "journos" to paint the General in bad light and throw muck at him while the more "respected" ones are used to argue on the lines of propriety and "civil-military' relationships. The above falls in second category where they are using Raj C.'s stature and have given the 'factual' part of the MOD's POV. Just goes to show at what level the politicians and babus will go to get their point across - and how serious the GOI was in the first place to solve the issue.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby Philip » 25 Jan 2012 14:06

"Curioser and curioser".Invaluable lesons to be learnt.I must quickly contact my old school and get my Ent.Application,TC,etc. and carefully preserve it for my immediate application to join "Dad's Army",our country's geriatric fighting unit ,the Home Guards! As Cpl. Jones would say,the Pakis and Chinese won't like it "up em,Sir!"

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby rohitvats » 25 Jan 2012 14:07

The biggest loophole in the story by Raj C is that the incumbent is made responsible for getting the mistake corrected and not the institution. One observation - that where ever VKS was asked to fill the details, barring the 'Record of the Particulars', he has put the DOB as 1951. Another point - was the Gazette notification published by MOD available with VKS to report the error?

One very crucial point - how can the GOI say -"it is also confirmed that the date of birth and educational qualifications of the cadets submitted to the NDA were verified by the UPSC" and "Among the points made by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) in its order of 30 December 2011 rejecting the Army Chief's statutory complaint was that he had produced no proof to show that the UPSC had issued a formal letter correcting the discrepancy".

The UPSC had clearly observed the anomaly (between DOB as in UPSC Form and certificate from school head-master) and asked for correction. If the UPSC had verified the DOB and qualification and allowed him to join the NDA course, how come the correction could not have been done by it and his YOB taken as 1951? The two arguments from GOI are exclusive of each other in the light of facts in the article.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby rohitvats » 25 Jan 2012 14:19

chackojoseph wrote:Why Birth certificate is not coming into picture? IIRC, when I first pointed out (even before we learn't that he had this confusion himself of his YOB) those days, either Birth Certificate was not there or people fiddled with YOB to show their kin of a lower age, folks shouted me down that "his father was a general and his DOB has been recorded yada yada...." Now, why hospital record, panchayat record etc are not surfacing? Why are not his fathers peers (uniform or otherwise) speaking up that "My bittoo / Bitya was born in same year as VKS etc etc."

Why don't you ask this question to Raj C who has written the article and questioned the credibility of VKS's complaint and case in the SC? Is the above article written by a supporter of VKS and hence, he needs to do the needful as you ask? So, why rant against people on BRF who support VKS?

Since, the school leaving certificate itself is under cloud, this case will drag down to a longer period.
Says who? The school leaving certificate is not under cloud - the act of submission of that letter is under cloud and that too, only in the opinion of AG. The same AG says two contradictory things about UPSC as I've pointed out in previous post. So, this is only one side of the story and that does not mean that it is correct. Raj C is not doing some independent investigating piece here - he is being HMV and presenting GOI's POV with sprinkling of POV from VKS side to "appear" neutral.

<SNIP>


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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby chackojoseph » 25 Jan 2012 14:45

rohitvats wrote:
chackojoseph wrote:.....<SNIP>


rohitvats,

I am ranting? I am reminding. I am speculating too.

As I see, there is a huge PR exercise being mounted upon from both sides and the (re)porters are publishing it as their own stories.

IMO, I won't be surprised if MoD haven't already sent a letter to Pune cantonment to report back the DOB. They will dig deeper.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby rajanb » 25 Jan 2012 14:48

Sad reading. May his soul rest in peace.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby kunalverma » 25 Jan 2012 15:55



In October I visited the Guraiz sector and the spot where Navdeep Singh was killed. The infiltrators were detected in the dead of the night and the officer intercepted the party on the banks of the Kishenganga River. Lying in ambush behind hardly any cover, the Lieutenant showed incredible nerve letting the lead elements go through before opening fire. I wish this forum had an easier way to upload images, I would post a photo of the spot where this gallant youngster sacrificed himself.
My heart goes out once again to his family. The Ashoka Chakra for them is but a small compensation. And to think there are hundreds of Navdeeps out there every waking minute guarding every inch of our land.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby rohitvats » 25 Jan 2012 16:57

chackojoseph wrote:rohitvats,
I am ranting? I am reminding. I am speculating too.
As I see, there is a huge PR exercise being mounted upon from both sides and the (re)porters are publishing it as their own stories.
IMO, I won't be surprised if MoD haven't already sent a letter to Pune cantonment to report back the DOB. They will dig deeper.


I don't think anyone needs a reminder here on the statement of facts. And you'd asked a loaded question to people like me who have and do support the General. When the fact is, I don't think I'm answerable for writings of the Editors who have decided to become mouthpieces of government. If you have to speculate, please ask Raj C and not "us". I don't feel obliged to answer anything. As for shenanighans of GOI, well, they are well know. The whole case rests on legality - and that is what GOI has ostensibly tried to put across, their legal POV and they are on firm ground, in this article through Raj C. Whether they would want all facts to come into public or not, is a seperate question. I'm waiting for him to comment on the promotions of VKS and the date shown on the associated document(s).

BTW - Let me ask a general question: On the matter of getting one's DOB corrected within 2years of joining Service (IA in this case) - with whom should the DOB be corrected with? In case of IA, AG Branch is the official record keeper and if VKS can claim and prove that AG's Branch has always had the correct DOB, then, the entire set of argument(s) of MOD flies out of the window. The GOI is trying to put spin on this debate - VKS maintains that he wanted the DOB's to be reconciled while GOI is trying to somehow show that it is a case of change of DOB. And hence, all the arguments in the latest article by our esteemed Editor.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby chackojoseph » 25 Jan 2012 17:25

rohitvats,

I disagree and deny that I have asked a loaded question to VKS supporters like you, as it will be like asking the question to myself. I have only put forward a particular point (repeating myself) that "I" expect to come up. Since the push has come to a shove, I expect the other party to play every ball possible.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby Surya » 25 Jan 2012 18:02

kunal

you can email the photos to kaps or someone and they can put it up


Thanks

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby nelson » 25 Jan 2012 21:23

When there is no separate thread for Civil Military Relationship in India and in the context of discussion i think this is apt here...http://groups.yahoo.com/group/48nda/message/9527

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby chaanakya » 25 Jan 2012 21:27

Austin wrote:

<snip>
Two don’t tally[/b]

The labyrinthine chambers of these two behemoths may hold the clue to why both these branches of the Indian Army have been maintaining different dates of birth ever since Vijay Kumar Singh was commissioned on 14 June 1970 — almost 42 years ago. While the MS Branch maintains that the Army Chief's date of birth is 10 May 1950, the AG's Branch in its records has it as 10 May 1951 — exactly a year's difference.

The fact that two Branches of Army had two different DOB is a pointer to another fact that VKS made efforts to get his DOB corrected.No further proof is needed.

<snip>

In the Army Chief's ‘Record of Service’ maintained by the AG's Branch, for instance, apart from his date of birth (shown as 10 May 1951), it has his educational qualifications, his date of commissioning, every single course he took, all his postings and promotions, the combat theatres he served in (over half a dozen of them), his marriage (to Bharti on 25 June 1975 in Bhiwani), his children (Mrinalini and Yogja with their date of births), his illnesses (among them a nasal allergy on 18 June 1991) and his awards and decorations (12 of them).


Ok so it is concluded that AG branch had 1951 as YOB which is asserted to be correct by VKS.


<snip>

Despite the elaborate records that the Army collects, when it comes to errors concerning the date of birth, there has been remarkably little dispute. On 17 November 2011, the RTI Cell of the Army in reply to a query stated that there have been only five cases of changes of birth dates of Army officers since 1947. Three of them were decided by a court order and in one case concerning a Lieutenant General, it took 36 years for him to get relief.

Sadly it is a reality that courts do take inordinately long time which mean denying justice. MOD may be counting on Courts to deliver .

<snip>
Elusive certificate

As proof of the date of birth, Rule 136 of the Army Manual states that the age recorded in the enrolment form of a person shall be in conformity with the date given in the matriculation certificate or equivalent examination. Or if no date of birth is shown on the certificate, then a school transfer/leaving certificate could be submitted or a certificate from the headmaster giving the exact age as recorded in the school admission file.


So Documents take precedence over dates recorded by individual in application form as per Rule 136.


In Singh's case, as he was yet to pass his Matriculation, he states that his father, Colonel Jagat Singh, who was then serving at 14 Rajput Regiment, had his Officer Commanding issue a certificate that was submitted to the UPSC before he did the NDA exams in December 1965. Singh did his Class X Board examinations in March 1966.

In May 1966, the NDA results were declared ahead of the Class X results and Singh was among those who passed. As part of the requirement he states he submitted to the UPSC a provisional certificate attested by his school, Birla Public School, Pilani, that showed his date of birth to be 10 May 1951. On 18 June 1966, the UPSC sent him a letter pointing out the discrepancy in the date of birth as compared to the form he had filled up for the NDA examination and requested him to clarify the correct date of birth.

With his Class X Board examinations just out and the original certificate expected to come only after six months, Singh got his school principal to issue a Secondary School Transfer Certificate that certified that he had passed the X Board examinations and that his date of birth was 10 May 1951. He stated that along with a covering letter from his father he personally handed over the certificate to the UPSC office in Delhi on 29 June 1966.

Singh believed that the UPSC had accepted the change and hence he was permitted to join the NDA. As proof that he had delivered such a letter, in his statutory complaint to the Union of India in August 2011 (the first time an Army Chief had resorted to such a plaint), Singh attached a copy of the stamped receipt that the UPSC gave him.

Among the points made by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) in its order of 30 December 2011 rejecting the Army Chief's statutory complaint was that he had produced no proof to show that the UPSC had issued a formal letter correcting the discrepancy. The MoD also pointed out that the UPSC in its files had no record of any communication it had with Singh or his father with regard to the matter.

UPSC gave stamped receipt of some letter. Did MOD dig deeper what letter was sent by VKS to UPSC on 29th June 1966.

Why the mix-up

So how then did the two branches of the Army, MS and AG, end up with varying dates on their records? The answer may lie in the numerous forms that the Army requires when a candidate is selected for the NDA and enters the Academy. This forms the basis of his future records. After passing the written examination, a candidate has to appear before a Service Selection Board (SSB) where apart from being interviewed by a panel of officers he also has to pass intelligence, psychological and physical endurance tests.

In Singh's case, since he had opted for the Air Force as his first choice, he was sent to the SSB in Dehradun. As soon as he arrived on 9 May 1966, as part of standard procedure, he was asked to fill up Form SP-103. This asked for details such as UPSC roll number, name, height, identification marks, date and place of birth, particulars of his parents, educational qualifications, references and home address. In that form Singh filled up his date of birth as 10 May 1951.

Simultaneously, another Form SP-44 is filled up by a Junior Commissioned Officer (JCO) that is to test the candidates. The data such as name, date of birth and other details are taken from the candidate’s UPSC form. In this form, Singh's date of birth is entered as 10 May 1950 reflecting what he had filled up in his original Application form. This form is also dated as 9 May 1966, the same day that Singh filled up his SP-103 form.

If the candidates were successful, as Singh was, the SP-103 form filled up by them were then sent for "verification of character and antecedents" to revenue and police officials of the district essentially the District Magistrate, the District Superintendent of Police (SP) and the SP (CID). Singh claims that since the SP-103 form also contained his date of birth these officials had verified it. But the MoD in its order pointed out that this was mainly for character verification and could not be taken as authentication of his birth records.


Ok Legally MOD is right that such documents are not taken as proof of DOB. But why Matriculation was not taken as proof of DOB when VKS submitted in 1971? Legally who is authorised to keep correct records? I believe AG. Then why not take that as authentic and MS records as Crap and unverified. If MS had doubt why it did not check with legal proof or sought from VKS legal documents to prove his DOB as in application form. On what basis did it take DOB as authentic one without proof?

The SP-103 is sent to the NDA where it becomes part of the Dossier of the candidate. After completion these are sent to the IMA, where a fresh set of Dossiers are compiled. Singh joined the IMA in July 1969 and while filling up the forms in the 'Record of Particulars' Singh wrote his date of birth as 10 May 1950. He was then 18 or 19 years of age depending on which date of birth is considered and can no more claim to be a minor. In his complaint, he states that the instructions were to fill the application form "as per the UPSC application form.”

Mounting evidence

The General claims he then got the IMA to write to his school and have the correct date of birth attested. The MoD, in its order, pointed out that IMA records showed no such communication with the school or that it had corrected the records on the basis of such communication. The MoD also pointed out that the IMA's Dossier, Record of Particulars, Final Assessment and Confidential report also showed Singh’s date of birth as 10 May 1950, which indicated that no correction had been made.

Singh counters such statements by citing the fact that his ID card (IC 24173) issued by the IMA, which he has to carry throughout his years of service, has his date of birth as 10 May 1951. The MoD's explanation is that the data is taken from the SP-103 form which Singh himself had filled up when he went to the SSB. But the MoD is hard put to explain why there was no verification done by the IMA when its other records had a contradictory date of birth.

Ok if IMA had no records to confirm that it received certificates for DOB as 1951 then did it dream of 1951 as mentioned in its ID issued to VKS.

There is one more form that is critical to the entire row. When a candidate passes out of the IMA and is commissioned into the Army, he is assigned to a Unit. As soon as he reports for duty, he fills up an IAFZ-2041 form which is the basic ‘Record of Service’. The details filled up in the form are to be authenticated by an officer of the unit. In Singh's case he is commissioned on 14 June 1970 and sent to the 14 Rajput, an infantry battalion, stationed in Delhi and in his IAFZ-2041 form he writes 10 May 1951 as his date of birth and this is authenticated by his Unit officer.

Well in application for to UPSC , VKS mentioned 1950 without proof and now ministry says that IAFZ2014 was written by VKS then why not accept it when he also had proof to back it up. It was also countersigned by UO. This record is dated 1970 so this also goes to poove that VKS did indeed made efforts to get his correct DOB reflected.
Had he written 1952 in application form to UPSC or in IAFZ MOD would have been right to reject on many grounds including ineligibility and absence of proof. They would not have taken his recording of DOB in application form at face value.



No authentication

In its order, the MoD charges Singh with “not correctly representing his date of birth”. Relying on advice given by Goolam Vahanvati, Attorney General of India, the MoD points out that the annexure to the IAFZ-2041 states: “Officers will ensure that particulars given by them are correct and agree with those given by them in the original application for the grant of commissioning ie UPSC.” The MoD concludes that “in the absence of authentication of 10 May 1951 as the date of birth, its basis for the Record of Service cannot be accepted.”

Ohhhhhh , here is the catch. It actually endorses the claim by VKS that he was asked to reflect DOB in SP-103 to be same as that of UPSC form.MOD should clarify is a similar annexure is for SP_103. Clearly he could not be faulted.

All these forms and dossiers are then sent to the MS Branch where they become part of the record in a register. A copy is also sent to the AG's Manpower Planning Unit 5 & 6, which is the repository of all commissioned officers records. The AG's Recruiting Directorate also sends the SP-44 form to MS Branch.

Vahanvati in his advice to the MoD on 11 May 2011 pointed out that when Singh was commissioned, there were four documents that showed his date of birth as 10 May 1951. These are: SP-103 which he filled up at the SSB, the autobiography he wrote in the NDA, the Record of Service taken from particulars he had filled up and the school transfer certificate. Vahanvati points out that of these four documents, three had been written by Singh himself.

So how can he be faulted for giving DOB from the time of beginning of his service and charged with not attempting to coorect DOB. And one of the document was Matriculation certificate which is incontrovertible proof as per SC

Of the documents that show his date of birth being 10 May 1950, two of them were written by Singh himself — the UPSC form and his dossier in the IMA. The note of commissioning dated 22 January 1971 also lists the same date.

So don't accept what was mentioned by VKS in his own reporting. That leaves us with Note of Commissioning and Matriculation. Noe of commissioning must have been authenticated with some proof of DOB. What was that document if not Matriculation. If not authenticated , who was responsible for it when there was ample evidence to indicate that two DOB existed.

To further disprove Singh's contentions, Vahanvati points out that within the AG Branch itself there are two sets of dates being maintained. He states that the AG Recruiting Directorate, which is tasked with verifying the date of birth, has a noting of 4 May 1971 that also shows the date of birth as 10 May 1950 — this is nearly one year after Singh gets commissioned into the Army. Vahanvati further states that in this noting "it is also confirmed that the date of birth and educational qualifications of the cadets submitted to the NDA were verified by the UPSC."

Oh ok so DOB was verified by NDA and UPSC. What documents were referred to? Where is the confirmation letter from UPSC when MOD say no letter exists in UPSC files and that he sent Matriculation certificate in 1971. If it was School transfer certificate or Commanding officers certificate or Military Hospital record, all show 1950. Is there any document which showed 1950 and presented by VKS to UPSC for verification? What was the basis of such verification by UPSC. I also know that prior to interview etc UPSC verifies with originals and he would have to some documents to prove correct DOB but then that may also be wrong and candidate gets opportunity to correct it later as well. In the joining process I know only of Attestation form signed by Candidate on being recommended by UPSC and that is sent to SB of the state/District who get verification of character and antecedents (it includes DOB as well) though this need not be taken as final. What is final is matriculation and that has been given to Army in 1971.

The MoD in its order mounts further evidence in the form of the mandatory Gazette notification with respect to the 45th Regular Course of the IMA that Singh belonged to. His date of birth in this vital document is recorded as 10 May 1950. The MoD points out that the file was initiated by the MS Branch, it was seen and vetted by the AG's Recruiting Branch, the Controller General of Defence Accounts (CGDA), and finally approved by the Ministry itself.

This may be the weak link in VKS Support.The only thing which VKS seems to have missed to do is to write a letter to Authorities to change DOB enclosing his certificate. If VKS gives any such proof his case is watertight else there is scope for MOD manipulation.

Further, the MoD points out that two of Singh's coursemates had queries about their date of birth and these were rectified. In the case of Baldev Singh Dhaliwal (IC24292), his date of birth was corrected and AK More, another coursemate of Singh, the CGDA sought verification of the date of birth as no indication was given in his application form regarding its verification. Significantly, the MoD adds, "No such observation was made" with regard to Singh.

The MoD's point was that if there was some ambiguity about Singh's date of birth record, it would have been pointed out then. When the MoD published the draft notification in the Gazette of India (No. 2558 dated 18 September 1971), next to Singh's name it showed his date of birth as 10 May 1950.

Singh's counter is that his commission was "provisional" as his matriculation certificate had yet to be submitted because of a peculiar turn of events. The original certificate, he states in his petition, went wrongly to his father's unit. As he had been transferred out, the postal department sent it to his village address where it lay till Singh went home in 1971 and discovered it. He said he promptly sent the original certificate through his company unit and after that his commission was regularised.

The MoD dismisses his assertion and points out that his commission in the draft gazette notification clearly mentions that he was a "regular commissioned" officer. Then, when the Army List 1974-75 is published, the most authentic document listing those who had been commissioned, Singh's name figures and his date of birth is mentioned as 10 May 1950.

Under Army rules, Singh has to request a correction within two years of its publication after which he forfeits the right to do so. The General makes no such official and formal request till 2006 by which time the MoD says it is too late to make any changes and his appeal had been timed out.

Tomorrow: The General fights back

Lets wait for next installment to see what further twist is there.

member_21708
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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby member_21708 » 25 Jan 2012 21:38

DNA profiling of soldiers may begin this year
New Delhi: Armed forces are likely to begin the DNA profiling of their soldiers this year -- a move that will help recognise bodies mutilated beyond recognition during an attack or mishap.

Officials said the profiling centre and data bank, being set up at the Department of Forensic Medicine in the Armed Forces Medical College in Pune, will be made functional from next month.

"The DNA data will help to identify the dead bodies and will also ensure that all bodies get respectful disposal. This facility is ready to be functional from February," Director General, Armed Forces Medical Services, Lt Gen HL Kakaria said.

Explaining the need for DNA profiling, he said, "Soldiers, sailors and air warriors are often lost in a disaster, accident or other unfortunate event. Establishing the identity of the servicemen from mortal remains recovered from such situations is critical to establishing death of individual and providing welfare to the next of kin."

The profiling centre will collect blood samples of the troops who are involved in hazardous tasks, including fighting militancy, and store them in a DNA data bank.

"The DNA profiling centre is being established to help in identification of bodies mutilated beyond recognition. We will start with a pilot project in Pune wherein it will be tried on the locals. Once successful, we will take it to forward areas and then to the rest of the country," Lt Gen Mandeep Singh, Director General Hospital Services of the Armed Forces said.

The facility will be inaugurated by Lt Gen Kakaria during the 50th Annual Armed Forces Medical Research Conference to be held next month.

http://zeenews.india.com/news/nation/dn ... 54605.html

Sanku
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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby Sanku » 25 Jan 2012 21:41

Another Honor & Integrity issue developing in ISRO.

Kangress ki Jai ho.

ramana
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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby ramana » 25 Jan 2012 21:53

rohitvats wrote:It seems that MOD has supplied the entire dossier to Raj C. to put forth their point on the case. There seems to be a clear strategy here-use lesser "journos" to paint the General in bad light and throw muck at him while the more "respected" ones are used to argue on the lines of propriety and "civil-military' relationships. The above falls in second category where they are using Raj C.'s stature and have given the 'factual' part of the MOD's POV. Just goes to show at what level the politicians and babus will go to get their point across - and how serious the GOI was in the first place to solve the issue.



Raj C performed similar services in his "Weapons of Peace". He had lots of intricate details (steel plate for liner, design configuration etc. etc.) to make it quack like a duck when it was rubber duckie.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby ASPuar » 25 Jan 2012 22:22

Defence Secretary Shashikant Sharma's wife employed to act as commentator at R-Day parade, instead of 15 year veteran announcer. MOD spokesperson Sitanshu Kar assures media that there is no nepotism at play.

http://news.in.msn.com/national/article ... id=5778035

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby Ankit Desai » 25 Jan 2012 22:51

ASPuar wrote:Defence Secretary Shashikant Sharma's wife employed to act as commentator at R-Day parade, instead of 15 year veteran announcer. MOD spokesperson Sitanshu Kar assures media that there is no nepotism at play.

http://news.in.msn.com/national/article ... id=5778035


OT

Correct me if I m wrong, veteran commentator is hired by NDTV.

-Ankit

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby GopiD » 26 Jan 2012 00:22


Austin
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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby Austin » 26 Jan 2012 10:24

Army Chief’s Age Row - Part 4
The General’s Gambit
By Raj Chengappa

“Requests for change of dates of birth of members of the defence services should not be encouraged. Only in very special cases the change be sponsored provided there is overwhelming evidence to show that the date of birth recorded in the services records is incorrect… Quite apart from the financial effect of such changes in dates of birth of officers etc they have certain far reaching implications affecting promotion…”

— Office Memorandum,
No 757/ D(MS) D(Coord) Ministry of Defence, 23 June 1954

“No requests for change of birth shall be entertained after the lapse of two years from the date of grant of first commission in case of commissioned officers…”

— Office Memorandum,
35 (1)/A/63 B, Ministry of Defence, 21 April 1964

Given the poor system of registration of births that existed soon after Independence, the Government of India thought it wise to pass tough rules governing requests for change of dates of birth. That included the Ministry of Defence which in 1954 passed an Office Memorandum (OM) discouraging requests for change of dates of birth. In 1964 it followed it up with another OM putting a strict time frame of two years from the date of grant of first commission within which the officer concerned could petition the Ministry for a change.

Chief of Army Staff General Vijay Kumar Singh's writ petition for reconciling his date of birth in the Army records in the highest court of the land may well be determined by these two office memoranda that apply to all armed forces personnel with no exceptions.

Time barred

General Singh was commissioned into the Indian Army on 14 June 1970 and if he had any issues with the correctness of his date of birth, he should have made a formal complaint to the Military Secretary Branch through his Unit by June 1972. He did not for the reasons outlined in previous parts of the series carried by The Tribune.

Even if the Army List of 1974-75 was published (which formally mentioned the commission of Vijay Kumar Singh and his date of birth as 10 May 1950) is taken as the final commissioning document, technically he would have had to make an appeal within two years of its publication.

By his own admission, in his statutory complaint to the Union Government and his writ petition, the first time he made an effort to amend his date of birth in the Army List was in 1985 when as a Major, he approached the Adjutant General Branch dealing with the records section.

According to Singh, he was not aware of the publication of the Army List when it came out as it was meant for restricted supply and not circulated at the Unit he was serving then. He also pointed out that since the ID Card issued to him by the Indian Military Academy (IMA) at the time of commissioning had his date of birth as 10 May 1951 he believed that his earlier efforts to get his date of birth corrected in the original UPSC Application Form had succeeded.

Singh states in his statutory complaint to the Government in August 2011, that in 1985, when a friend mentioned to him about the discrepancy in the Army List, he approached the AG Branch Manpower Planning (MP) 5/6 for help. He states that he was informed that as per their records his date of birth was 15 May 1951 and that "as they were the designated authority on these matters, therefore, I should not worry about the Army List and it would get automatically updated with corrected data."

MoD's counter

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) does not buy Singh's argument. In its order of 30 December 2011 rejecting the General's statutory complaint it states, "There is no record to substantiate this assertion. Therefore it cannot be accepted." Goolam Vahanvati, Attorney General of India, who was consulted by the MoD on the entire issue, in his advice given on 21 November 2011, is more scathing in his comments over the 1985 attempt stating, " If a person, as painstaking as the complainant appears to be in his efforts to 'rectify' his date of birth, knew that there was a discrepancy with regard to the Army List, surely he would not have left it at the level of an oral assurance and ensured that rectification did in fact take place."

Vijay Kumar Singh made his next bid to change his date of birth as a Brigadier in 2002 when he approached the Management Information System Organisation (MISO) wing that publishes the Nominal Roll of Brigadiers and above. In the Nominal Roll, his date of birth was listed as 10 May 1950. Singh states that he had forwarded a copy of his matriculation certificate to it. But in its order the MoD pointed out, "Here again, there are no records either with MISO or with the complainant to substantiate the assertion."

Yet it isn't as if the MoD is without fault. Singh points out that all his Confidential Records maintained by the MS Branch on which his promotions were based, have his date of birth as 10 May 1951 as do the awards and decorations he won from time to time.

The first time that the MoD officially acknowledged that there was a discrepancy in the records maintaining his date of birth was in 2006 when Singh was a Major General and had completed 36 years of service in the Army. The MS Branch had sent a proposal to the MoD empanelling Singh in the rank of Lieutenant General to be posted as Commander of 10 Corp. Such a procedure is followed as any promotion from the rank of Major General to Lieutenant General in the Army has to be approved by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) chaired by the Prime Minister.

The then Joint Secretary (G and Air), MoD, in a note of 23 April 2006 to the Army HQ pointed out that Singh's date of birth in the 'Nominal Roll' was recorded as 10 May 1950 whereas in the 'Paramount Card', which is a summary of his entire record of service, the date given was 10 May 1951. He also pointed out that the original UPSC application form for the NDA examination as well as the draft Gazette notification of the 45 Regular Course for IMA, which Singh was part of, gave his date of birth as 10 May 1950. The Joint Secretary wanted the note to reflect the correct date of birth.

On 3 May 2006, Lt General Richard Khare, the then Military Secretary, wrote to Singh stating these anomalies and ended by stating, "You are hereby requested that, in future, you may reflect the correct date of birth which is 10 May 1950… Alternatively, you may clarify the variance and the correct date of birth as known by you."

To this, Singh, who was then Chief of Staff at 15 Corps HQ, replied on 10 May 2006 starting with "My dear General" and explaining that as his Secondary School Certificate did not arrive till 1971, the AG's branch had marked his commission as "provisional." And on receipt of the certificate "the provisional status was removed" and his corrected date of birth was accepted by them.

Justifying the anomaly


Singh then stated that he was attaching the original certificate and a copy of the 'Record of Service' maintained by the AG's MP5 for his perusal. About the anomalies in the other documents, Singh wrote, "it is submitted that the date given in the UPSC form was filled as per details given by the school clerk and the same was subsequently maintained till the original certificate was received. In the absence of the original certificate the error made due to what the clerk gave continued. The correct date of birth has accordingly been mentioned on the CR's since submission of the original certificate."

It is in this letter he put down on record his efforts to get the date of birth corrected in 1985 and in 2002. He ended the letter by stating, "I have always retained the impression that the necessary correction would have been carried out by the MS Branch at the behest of AG's Branch. It appears that this impression has been wrong and a doubt has come up almost 35 years after submission of correct certificates. It is required that necessary corrections may now be made per records maintained by AG's branch."

Conflicting records


By making such an assertion, Singh for the first time put down in writing as to why he believed the discrepancy between the records of the AG's Branch and the MS Branch with regard to his date of birth came about. There was an indication that the late arrival of his certificate may have compounded his earlier request to the UPSC in 1966 when the discrepancy in his date of birth was first noticed. This may also explain why the IMA had conflicting records reflecting his date of birth that was then inherited by the two Army Branches, AG and MS.

From Singh's account in his letter to Khare he had sent his certificate to the AG Branch for correction of his date of birth a year after he was commissioned in 1970. Perhaps he should have submitted it to the MS Branch which had taken charge of his records after he was commissioned and was supposedly the sanctioning authority for making changes in the date of birth in the records.

In his complaint to the government, Singh states he met Khare, the then Military Secretary, after he sent the letter to him. According to Singh, Khare explained "the entire issue in detail. I was told that if my confidential reports reflected my date of birth as 10 May 1951, then I should have no reason for concern. I was told that all records will be checked again and the reconciliation will be carried out."

Singh states on the basis of this reassurance he did not pursue the matter further about correction of his date of birth at that time. Singh was then promoted as a Lieutenant General and posted as General Officer Commanding of the Ambala based 2 Corp. His apparent acquiescence during this crucial period is a subject of debate.

The MoD, though, has a different account of how Khare handled the matter after he received Singh's letter of 10 May 2006. In its order of 30 December 2011, the MoD states, "Records indicate that the case was examined in detail in the MS Branch. The MP Directorate, AG Branch informed MS branch that the service records of the Late Col Jagat Singh, the complainant's father, show that the Veteran Register did not have any details with regard to dates of birth of his children. Keeping in view the rule position that the date of birth entered in the Army List as verified by the complainants original UPSC application form, is to be treated as correct for the purposes of promotion and retirement and any change or correction of the date of birth in case of commissioned officers cannot be considered after a lapse of two years from the date of Commission, MS Branch, with the approval of the then Chief of Army Staff decided that 10 May 1950 was being considered as the complainant's correct date of birth."

Silence speaks


Khare then wrote a letter dated 21 August 2006 to Singh, who then had taken over as GOC, 2 Corp, stating, "After due examination of the case and in light of the rule position, facts brought out and documents forwarded by you along with the DO letter, we regret to inform you that the case for change/correction of your date of birth cannot be processed at this belated state."

There is a lull in the correspondence for over a year before Singh brings up the issue of the correction of his date of birth. In doing so Singh appears to have resorted to unusual tactics. He approached the AG's branch to officially clarify his age. Accordingly, in October 2007 Lt Col BR Chharang, AAG MP 5 & 6 issued a "To Whomsoever it May Concern" letter that stated "As per the records maintained by this headquarters, IC 24173 W Lieutenant General Vijay Kumar Singh, AVSM, YSM, was commissioned in the Indian Army on 14 June 1970. The date of birth of the General Officer is 10 May 1951."

Having obtained confirmation from the AG’s branch of his date of birth, he forwarded the certificate to Lt Gen P.R. Gangadharan, who replaced Khare as Military Secretary, and in his covering letter of 10 December 2007 he refers to Khare’s letter of 21 August 2006 rejecting his request to correct his date of birth and states, “You are kindly requested to reconcile your records to reflect the correct date of birth. It is also requested that henceforth my correct date of birth as per AG records may please be reflected.”

By then Singh is being considered for promotion to the rank of Army Commander to be posted as GoC-in-C, Eastern Army Command. His letter asking for his date of birth to be reconciled is brought to the notice of Bimal Julka, the then Joint Secretary (G/Air), who wants to know the reasons behind it and sends a letter to the Military Secretary.

On 20 December 2007 Gangadharan, the Military Secretary, wrote back to Julka, giving the background of the case stating, “In view of the above, his official date of birth continues to be entered as 10 May 1950.” From the records it appears that Singh meanwhile independently pursued the issue with the AG’s branch because sometime in early January 2008, Maj General SR Ghosh, the then ADG MP & P, puts out a detailed note stating that all records available in his office indicate that his date of birth is 10 May 1951.

The MS branch though remained unconvinced. On 21 January 2008, Gangadharan wrote to Singh, repeating the points as to why a change in the date of birth cannot be considered and stated, “We are constrained to maintain your official date of birth as 10 May 1950 and the same may kindly be reflected in all your records/documents. The AG’s branch is being accordingly intimated to amend the records being maintained by them. Please acknowledge and confirm your acceptance.”

Singh’s adamant approach though seems to have miffed the MoD which began to question the suitability of promoting him. On 21 January 2008, Julka wrote to General Deepak Kapoor, the then Chief of Army Staff, (COAS) stating: “ It is an oddity that the officer has continued to stand by a date of birth, which is not officially recognised and thereby revealing an attitude apparently questionable and not reflective of the qualities expected from an Army Commander. In view of this, the question of suitability of Lt Gen VK Singh as Army Commander calls for a revisit.”

Singh appears to have been conveyed the news of the displeasure his memos were generating in the MoD and that it may affect his chances of a promotion. For he wrote to Gangadharan on 24 January 2008 stating that, “I am constrained to point out that your letter raises questions of my integrity and hence I would like to clarify a few issues.” He then goes on to state that he never sought a date of birth change and all he was asking for was a reconciliation of records.

He ended on a conciliatory note stating: “I have total belief in the system as also great faith in the sagacity and wisdom of the organisation I have been serving. Therefore, anything which is required to be done in the larger interests of the organisation may be undertaken by the HQ.”

The MoD though remained dissatisfied with such a vague commitment. Singh in his petition states that “after a telephonic discussion with the then COAS” he sent a signal to the MS Branch the same day stating “whatever decision taken in the organizational interest is acceptable to me.”

From the exchange of cables that follows it is apparent that Singh pushed the MoD to make some commitment to go in-depth into his request for a change in the date of birth before he sends a final letter to the Military Secretary that “in view of the above constraint and in accordance with the discussion of date, I will mention the date of birth as directed.” That acquiescence which seemingly led to his promotion as Army Commander again became the subject of a raging debate.

Part 5: A matter of propriety

chaanakya
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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby chaanakya » 26 Jan 2012 11:23

^^ Is it Govt case that its branches were maintaining only 1950? Is it the case that 1950 as mentioned in UPSC form was verified with reference to some documentary evidence of DOB? Is it the case that they had not received matriculation certificate in 1971 from VKS?
Is it the case that somehow some branches or IMA or Unit officers etc dreamt of 1951 though VKS made no efforts to bring correct DOB to notice ? Are they so gullible to accept some date nowhere reflected in Army documents or supported by accepted proof?
If there exists two dates within Army branch and one of which is officially the record-keeper then whose duty it is to get it verified and within what time limit? If there is ID card issued by IMA indicating 1951 as YOB then cadet has genuine belief that his DOB is reconciled.All these discrepancies dates back to 1971. when he would have purportedly submitted his Matriculation certificate. Instead of cadet asking for change it is more a question of verification by concerned authorities with reference to documents. It is surprising that Army had no verified particulars with reference to documents. Whether VKS was born at all needs to be proved by Municipal Birth certificate or examination of doctors/nurses or ward attendants.

Applicability of these Office Memorandum would not arise if there exists two dates within Army . It is more the lack of following due procedure in verifying DOB mentioned by the Cadet. I think Ramana garu posted NDA joining insrucion sheet which clewarly indicates that DOB is to be verified with reference to Matriculation certificate. It is indeed surprising why Army , at any stage , did not carry out the verification of documents to ascertain correct particulars. MOD muddling by Babus merely takes advantage of the muddle that happened in early stages of VKS career.

RC certainly has seen original files and records before writing this series of post. It makes it clear to me that it is more a case of non verification and subsequent non reconciliation by Army then seeking correction by the cadet belatedly.


MOD has no case whatever and whenever be the outcome.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby chackojoseph » 26 Jan 2012 11:36

GopiD wrote:"DOES THE GENERAL KNOW WHAT HE'S UP AGAINST??"

http://www.rediff.com/news/column/does-general-v-k-singh-know-what-hes-up-against/20120125.htm

Good one......


He definitely knows that he is against the scums. The going to the court and calling corruption a problem during Anna Hazare's fast, is something he has done to address the basic maladies other than going after the specific ills and people in his organisation. I don't think that by just going behind specific cases and personnel is corruption fight. Addressing the mental corruption is also important.

chaanakya
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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby chaanakya » 26 Jan 2012 13:06

Did I hear someone say that Indian Army was fighting 1971 war and that VKS was actively training for that and later participating in that instead of keeping meticulous track of correction in his DOB in MS/AG branch in Delhi? What do we expect from our Generals, behave like paper tigers as some did in 1962.

It was certainly a fit case for the Saint to show statesmanship in resolving the issue instead of going down the drain of History.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby kunalverma » 26 Jan 2012 14:14

ramana wrote:
rohitvats wrote:It seems that MOD has supplied the entire dossier to Raj C. to put forth their point on the case. There seems to be a clear strategy here-use lesser "journos" to paint the General in bad light and throw muck at him while the more "respected" ones are used to argue on the lines of propriety and "civil-military' relationships. The above falls in second category where they are using Raj C.'s stature and have given the 'factual' part of the MOD's POV. Just goes to show at what level the politicians and babus will go to get their point across - and how serious the GOI was in the first place to solve the issue.



Raj C performed similar services in his "Weapons of Peace". He had lots of intricate details (steel plate for liner, design configuration etc. etc.) to make it quack like a duck when it was rubber duckie.


In 2000 I reviewed Weapons of Peace for Biblio and Chengappa got extremely mad at me - in fact he spoke to me for 45 mins on the phone to impress upon me that the book wasn't 'unintelligently' written. Now I think he's fast trying to become the John le Carré of India. If only he had gone into a bit more detail about each file, the colour and the position of each comment and signature on each document, maybe his 4/5 part narrative could have sold as a screen play for a film. If Chengappa thinks he's bolstering the CAG's case, he's only making the entire case into an elaborate bereaucratic spoof! This entire episode would give the producers of Yes Minister a run for their money!

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby chackojoseph » 26 Jan 2012 14:58

^^^^ .... Chengappa the reporter scores again and again over Chengappa the analyst, ...... Why he wouldn't be peeved?

kunalverma
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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby kunalverma » 26 Jan 2012 15:17

His Excellency General JJ Singh, the Governor of Arunachal and former Chief of the Army Staff had during a trip to Tawang told me how he had 'hand picked' VKS to command the country's main strike 2 Corps as he was one of the finest and brightest officers whom he was grooming for the top job.
By most accounts, the VKS 'age controversy' really only surfaced in 2006 when His Excellency was at the helm of affairs. In lieu of all the speculation and conspiracy theories, I wonder why GOI simply doesn't ask the former Chief to state publically on what grounds he decided to fix 1950 as VKS's DOB, especially since it involved over ruling the AGs branch in favour of the MS branch. As far as I know, His Excellency, even though he's in Itanagar, has always been very kindly available to the media. I'm sure His Excellency is perhaps the best person to address the issue.

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby rohitvats » 26 Jan 2012 16:41

OK. Time for quiz - what was unique about the Infantry contingent during this years R-Day Parade?

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Re: Indian Army: News & Discussion

Postby rajeshks » 26 Jan 2012 17:22

rohitvats wrote:OK. Time for quiz - what was unique about the Infantry contingent during this years R-Day Parade?


Noticed a few things.. donno which one you are looking for :)

1. Lead by Para SF
2. Mostly mountain regiments ie; Gorkha, Kumaon, Assam..
3. Officers were wearing regimental caps
4. Only infantry officers in Ceremonial uniform others were having camouflage
5. military dogs..


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