New Delhi: A senior Army General is likely to approach Armed Forces Tribunal over the issue of promotions. Lt Gen Ravi Dastane claims he has been denied appointment as Army commander.
He says that the post was kept vacant for Lt Gen Dalbir Singh who was under a vigilance ban. Gen Dastane is currently Deputy Chief of Integrated Defence Staff. Dastane's petition could throw open the battle for the next Army Chief.
After commanding the Leh base 14 corp, Lt Gen Dastane was eligible to be posted as the army commander, which is a prerequisite for becoming the Army chief. The crucial date in this entire battle is May 2012 when two posts of Army commanders fell vacant.
The seniority at that point in time was: 1. Lt Gen Dalbir Singh, 2. Lt Gen Sanjiv Chachra, 3. Lt Gen Ravi Dastane.
At that point in time, Lt Gen Dalbir Singh was in a Discipline Vigilance ban, which was put forward by former Army chief General VK Singh. Therefore, the Army kept his post vacant, but it gave Lt Gen Sanjiv Chachra the Western Command, and denied any posting to Lt Gen Dastane.
Two months past, Gen Bikram Singh took over and nullified that DV ban, restoring seniority to Lt Gen Dalbir Singh and posted him as the Eastern Army commander.
Now, Lt Gen Dastane believes it was unfair and that he should have been treated fairly. He feels that there have been different standards that have been applied. Officially, neither the army nor the Ministry of Defence have reacted to these developments, as the case has not been filed in the Armed Forces tribunal yet.
However, according to sources, Lt Gen Dastane has filed a complaint at the Ministry of Defence. Sources in the MoD have said that even though Lt Gen Dalbir Singh had a DV ban, his case was very much alive, and that there was a show-cause notice and he was very much still in the reckoning.