Army demands probe against ex-Gen VK Singh, Opposition calls political vendetta

In a move which the Opposition sees as a political vendetta, the Indian Army on Friday recommended a high level probe against former Army chief General VK Singh.

Updated: Sep 20, 2013, 13:16 PM IST

Zee Media Bureau

New Delhi: In a move which the Opposition calls political vendetta, the Indian Army has recommended a high level probe against former Army chief General VK Singh.

Reports on Friday said the Army has requested the Defence Ministry to order a high-level probe into the functioning of a top secret intelligence unit set up by Gen VK Singh, suspecting it of carrying out "unauthorised operations" and financial wrongdoings.

The Army report about the Technical Support Division (TSD), which was accused of illegally tapping phones of senior Defence Ministry officials, has been submitted to the Defence Ministry and it has recommended a probe into the functioning of the unit.

However, the Army does not want to carry out inquiry against the unit on its own as it does not want to be seen as taking action against its former chief.

The report was prepared by Director General Military Operations Lt Gen Vinod Bhatia as part of a Board of Officers (BOO) formed by Gen Bikram Singh to review the functioning of the top secret unit set up under his predecessor.

A leading daily has also claimed that Singh set up the special unit, which tried to topple the Jammu and Kashmir government.

The TSD also tried to block General Bikram Singh`s promotion, it alleged.
Reacting to the reports, Gen VK Singh said, "This is simple vendetta as some people are not comfortable with me sharing the dais with Narendra Modi to espouse the cause of ex-servicemen in the country."

He said if anyone has recommended a probe into the functioning of the unit, then that person is "talking through his hat" as its operations were meant to be secret.

It is learnt that the report submitted by the Bhatia-led committee has stated that TSD was allegedly involved in "unauthorised operations" which may have taken place even across the border without the proper clearance from the higher-ups in the Government.

Though Army has refused to comment on the issue, its recommendation of probe against Singh has evoked sharp reactions from the Opposition.
Senior BJP leader Balbir Punj and former IPS officer Kiran Bedi have questioned the timing of the recommendation of probe against Gen Singh.

"When VK Singh was at the helm, speaking up for integrity, he was a hero! Now that he has spoken as an insider, efforts will be to shoot him down," Bedi tweeted this morning.

Speaking to a news channel, Punj said, "The timing of this report is questionable. Gen Singh has been a whistleblower against corrupt practices. He is being punished for speaking against the Centre and for his links with Modi."

With Agency inputs