On 29.09.2020, Hon’ble Justice Asha Menon and Hon’ble Justice R. S Endlaw of the Delhi High Court dismissed a petition filed by a military cadet. Petitioner alleged that he was asked to leave the IMA due to prejudice and vindictive nature of his senior officers.
The Court held that he was non suited for the military and has been pushed into millitary to fulfill desire of Father.
The petitioner cleared the Combined Defence Services (CDS) Exam. Later he joined the Indian Military Academy on 8th July 2017 for training. The petitioner alleged that he was subjected to ragging and hospitalised from 17th July 2017 to 26th July 2017. He filed a complaint on 27th July 2017 against the ragging.
It was further alleged that after he filed the complaint, he was subjected to punishments without any reason. He passed his first term and was promoted to the second term. However, towards the end of the second term, he was served with a Notice to Show Cause as to why he should not be ‘Relegated’ for having accumulated 60 Restrictions in two terms from 8th July 2017 to 30th May 2018.
The petitioner filed a reply, but he was relegated and had to repeat the course. As per the statement, the petitioner worked hard and was promoted to the third term. During his third term, he was again issued a show-cause notice, and was once again relegated.
Without losing his heart the petitioner started his third term again. It was alleged that his Company Commander unjustly punished the petitioner and due to this he reported the Commander to Deputy Commander. Instead of taking action against the Company commander, an Honour Code Committee was constituted against the petitioner.
Petitioner alleged that the members of the Honour Code Committee were biased against him. Therefore he submitted a written reply to the queries of the Honour Code Committee. It was also mentioned that before his final Physical Training Test he was made to stand before the door of the Company Commander with bricks and sand bangs on his back and this why he failed his final PT tests as well. His demand to appear for a retest was also rejected.
On 9th November 2019, he was again awarded several restrictions due to no fault of his own. The petitioner alleged that these new restrictions were awarded to ensure that he withdraws from the IMA. Thereafter, on 19th November 2019 he was again served a show-cause notice and was to explain why he should not be relegated again due to his failure in the PT tests and he should not be asked to leave the academy.
The petitioner asked for 14 days to file his reply and also requested that he should be allowed to appear for the PT test again. Despite his request, he was relegated again and was asked to withdraw from the IMA on 23.11.2019.
Reasoning of the Delhi High Court
Hon’ble Delhi High Court asked the army to provide all the documents that led up to the withdrawal letter and all the policy documents as well. After the perusal of the records, the Delhi High Court observed that IMA had acted strictly in accordance with the Rules of HQ ARTRAC, in respect of the punishments, the ‘Relegations’ as well as the ‘withdrawal’.
On the contention that the Honour Code Committee had members from his regiment, the Delhi High Court after studying the documents held that the members were from different regiments and there was no bias as well. Further, on the issue that he was punished before the PT test but as per record, the reason was that the petitioner was overweight, and that is why he failed the PT test.
On the accusation that there were no records of punishments meted out to him, the Court opined that the allegations were false because there were records from 2017 to 2019 that reflected that he was punished for various reasons.
Decision of the Court
The Delhi High Court held that petitioner is not suited to a military lifestyle and possibly the desires of his father pushed him into this direction. Accordingly, the petition was dismissed.
Title:DHRUV JAKHAR. versus UNION OF INDIA & ORS
Case No.: W.P. (C) 5622/2020
Date of Order: 29.09.2020
Coram: Hon’ble Justice Asha Menon and Hon’ble Justice R. S Endlaw
Counsels for the Petitioners:Mr. Karan Dewan and Ms. Aanchal Jain
Counsels for the Respondents: Mr. Satya Ranjan Swain, CGSr.C with Mr. Sameer Sinha, GP with Major Katoch, Legal Cell