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Army Court Orders Dismissal of Major General for Sexual Harassment

The army officer’s lawyer said that they would be appealing against the order. 

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India
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A serving major general of the Indian Army was ordered to be dismissed by general court martial (GCM) on Sunday, 23 December, following allegations of sexual harassment of a young woman officer, reported IANS.

The GCM verdict came early on Sunday in the two-year-old sexual harassment case. The court was held in the jurisdiction of the Western Command.

As per Army Rules, the recommendation of the GCM would now be sent to higher authorities, including Chief of Army Staff, for confirmation.

The officer had played a crucial role in one of the surgical strikes carried out by the Indian Army in the last few years, reported ANI.

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The senior Army officer, who has denied the charges levelled against him and has claimed that he has been made a victim of the Army's factional feud at the top level, has the right to appeal against the order.

Advocate Anand Kumar, representing the major general in the trial, told ANI that they would be appealing against the order as the "(GCM) court has not at all looked into the defence case.”

“Evidence has not been appreciated properly and harassment decision has been passed in a haste.”
Anand Kumar, lawyer of the major general, to ANI

The major general was charged under Section 69 of the Army Act read with Section 354 (outraging modesty of a woman by criminal force or assault) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for conduct unbecoming of an officer, IANS further reported.

The officer was posted in the North-East sector (Assam Rifles in Nagaland) with the Eastern Command when he was accused of sexual harassment, through a written complaint, by the Captain-rank woman officer of the Judge Advocate General branch of the Army.

The court proceedings against him started in June this year. He was attached to an Army formation in Ambala for disciplinary proceedings.

(With inputs from IANS and ANI.)

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