Decided on April 20,2007

UNION OF INDIA Respondents


S.N.AGGARWAL, J. - (1.) The petitioner, Ex Sepoy (L/NK) Sunil Kumar, 18th Battalion JAT Regiment, in this writ of certiorari, calls in question an order dated 18.01.2006 passed by the Chief of the Army staff on his statutory petition under Section 164 (2) of the Army Act, 1950 against the findings and sentence of summary court martial held on 02.04.2002 pursuant to which he was dismissed from service.
(2.) The brief background of the case giving rise to this writ petition is as follows:- The petitioner was enrolled in Army as Sepoy in 1988. He met with an accident on 09.12.1997 in which he suffered multiple fracture on his right hand shoulder and ribs. He was thereafter placed in low medical category CEE (Permanent) w.e.f 03.10.1998. He was provided sheltered appointment on account of his being in low medical category CEE (Permanent). On 16.01.2002 heated arguments took place between the petitioner and other members of the guard over the issue of change of timings of sentry duty of the petitioner. A court of inquiry was held regarding the said incident and after holding court of inquiry, the Commanding Officer of the petitioner ordered for recording of summary of evidence. The charges against the petitioner as contained in Annexure I to A.O. 24/94 were read out and explained to him to which he pleaded not guilty. Nine witnesses were examined by the Department as prosecution witnesses. The petitioner also produced three witnesses in his defence. However, despite opportunity given, the petitioner declined to cross-examine all the witnesses examined by the prosecution. After recording of summary of evidence, the summary court martial was held against the petitioner on 30th March, 1st April and 2nd April, 2002. The petitioner pleaded not guilty of the charges against him even during the summary court martial held against him. He refused to cross-examine the prosecution witnesses examined during the summary court martial held against him. The summary court martial, after trial, found the petitioner guilty of all the charges and sentenced him 'to be dismissed from service'.
(3.) Aggrieved by the findings and sentence awarded to him by the summary court martial, the petitioner preferred a statutory petition under Section 164 (2) of the Army Act, 1950 which was rejected vide impugned order dated 18.01.2006 by the Chief of the Army staff (respondent No. 2).;

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