Jawans dismissed for `cowardice` move tribunal for relief

Eight jawans, who were dismissed from the Army and jailed for showing "cowardice" during a suicide attack by militants in Jammu and Kashmir, have moved the Armed Forces Tribunal against their court martial.

New Delhi: Eight jawans, who were dismissed
from the Army and jailed for showing "cowardice" during a
suicide attack by militants in Jammu and Kashmir, have moved
the Armed Forces Tribunal against their court martial.

Seeking their reinstatement, the jawans from the 610 EME
Battalion have urged the Tribunal to quash the
"discriminatory" court martial held by the Army against them,
their counsel Colonel (retd) S R Kalkal said here.

The jawans who have filed the petition include Naik A R
Das, Subedar G P Sharma, Digamabar, Lance Naik Christopher
Columbus, B D Rao, Sunil Pandurang and Madhusudan.

Apart from being dismissed, all of them were awarded jail
terms ranging from six months to two years.

They were court-martialled after they were found guilty
of trying to run away from the scene of action during a
terrorist attack on their camp in Akhnoor in 2003.

Kalkal said one of the Junior Commissioned Officers
(JCOs), who was not issued weapons and had suffered bullet
injuries in the attack and was recovered in an unconscious
state, was also court-martialled and awarded a jail sentence.

The suicide attack was one of biggest on Army
installations where terrorists had shot dead a Brigadier and
seven soldiers in Akhnoor.

After the initial attack, several senior officers of
Northern Command had reached the spot as the local Army
authorities thought they had eliminated all the terrorists but
one of the terrorists who was hiding fired bullets and hurled
grenades, which killed Brig H S Govil on the spot.

PTI

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