Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Supreme Court of India on excessive leniency in officer courts-martial

Justice H.L. Dattu
The New Delhi Nation reports here on a recent decision of the Supreme Court of India:
The Supreme Court on Tuesday came down heavily on the government and Army for handing out “pittance” in punishment to the army officers, who sold their non-service pattern (NSP) weapons in border districts of Rajasthan.
A bench led by Justice H L Dattu questioned why the authorities, which sacked officers for drunken brawls, let off the erring officer very lightly for something as serious as selling weapons in breach of the rules.
The court sought a response from Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi as to why the court martial proceedings be not quashed and officers be re-tried.
It also asked as to why similar inquiry into alleged sale of NSP weapons by Army officers in other eight commands of Army should not initiated.
Further details appear in this article from The Times of India

1 comment:

  1. The problem is at a more fundamental level.

    The Army Act provides that a Court Martial can award a lesser punishment to a delinquent than the general law of the land.

    So for example, for a particular offence even if 5 years imprisonment is provided under the penal code, a person facing a court martial can be let off with a lesser punishment on being convicted by a Court Martial.

    This schism definitely needs to be bridged in India and also elsewhere.


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