Sukna land scam: Lt Gen Prakash held guilty, dismissed

Former military secretary, Lt Gen (retd) Avadesh Prakash was on Saturday held guilty by an Army court here in connection with the infamous Sukna land scam.

Last Updated: Dec 03, 2011, 14:03 PM IST

Zeenews Bureau

Guwahati: Former military secretary, Lt Gen (retd) Avadesh Prakash was on Saturday held guilty by an Army court here in connection with the infamous Sukna land scam.

Following the verdict, Avadesh Prakash has been dismissed from the service. The dismissal means he will not be entitled to any benefits like pension.

Prakash, whose court martial proceedings in Guwahati got over yesterday, was today held guilty on three counts, including misuse of official position. However, the court gave him benefit of doubt on the fourth count of committing a civil offence.

Prakash was held guilty of misusing his position under the Army Act Section 45 (conduct unbecoming of his position as an officer) and Section 52 (intent to defraud) by the General Court Martial at the 51 sub area of the Army station at Narengi.

The scam involved transfer of 71 acres of land adjacent to Sukna military station in West Bengal.

The Army had in January this year punished another senior officer and former 33 Corps Commander Lt Gen PK Rath in the same case and had awarded punishment involving loss of seniority and some part of his pension.

Both Avadesh Prakash and Rath had been earlier indicted by a court of inquiry constituted by the Army in 2010.

The scam dates back to 2008 when the alleged move to transfer the land in Siliguri district of West Bengal to a private educational trust came out in the open, leading to the Army initiating the disciplinary proceedings against senior Army officials, including Avadesh Prakash and Rath.

Though the then Army Chief General Deepak Kapoor wanted to let off Avadesh Prakash lightly with just an administrative action, Defence Minister AK Antony had intervened and ordered his court-martial.