The five soldiers who petitioned before the Chandigarh bench of the Armed Forces Tribunal (AFT) against their punishment after mutiny in Nyoma near Leh in 2012 did not get any relief on Friday.
The court ordered them to file the pre-confirmation petitions and applications for suspension of sentence again and told the army authorities to decide the cases expeditiously.
The soldiers were dismissed and sentenced to 10-year rigorous imprisonment (RI) after a trial through the military court on August 19.
“We opposed their petitions and said they had not filed pre-confirmation petitions according to the right procedure. Their punishments are yet to be confirmed,” said Captain Sandeep Bansal (retd), counsel for the army.
“The soldiers are in army custody since June 19. Their pre-confirmation petitions were returned twice on flimsy grounds. The non-processing of the petitions has curtailed the life and liberty of the appellants which is against the statutory provisions of Article 21 of the Constitution of India,” informed Col GS Ghuman (retd), counsel for the soldiers who had also sought bail.
The five soldiers whose petitions came up for hearing on Friday were Satyender Kumar, Sarabjeet Singh, YC Babu, Sunil Kumar and Manas Bhattacharjee. Four more soldiers, Anish Kumar Bundale, Rohit Kumar, Varun Kumar Sharma and Sharwan Ram, who were also punished, will approach the AFT on Monday.
In May 2012, officers and jawans had clashed at Nyoma near Leh following a rape attempt on an officer’s wife. The officers had to flee after they were attacked. Officers involved had already pleaded guilty and were let off with forfeiture of services while a number of jawans faced trial and later imprisonment and dismissal.
Suman Kumar, a sahayak who allegedly assaulted the officer’s wife, has already been sentenced to 10-year RI and dismissed from service.
Col P Kadam, commanding officer of the unit, is facing court martial in Jammu and Kashmir.