Defence Minister A K Antony on Thursday ordered a probe into the alleged land fraud at a military station in Darjeeling in which at least two army generals are said to be involved.
Antony issued the orders to Defence Secretary Pradeep Kumar on Thursday, taking note of reports that senior Army officers were allegedly involved in the fraud committed by a private institution, officials said in New Delhi.
The Army has already instituted a court of inquiry into the allegations that the Generals and other senior officers had issued a No-Objection Certificate (NOC) to an institution that bought the land adjacent to the Sukhna military station in Darjeeling a few years ago on the pretext of starting a branch of the famed Ajmer-based Mayo College there.
The Ministry probe, a report of which Antony wanted as soon as possible, would be independent of the Army inquiry, the officials said.
The Defence Minister's action comes a day after he spelt out a zero-tolerance towards corruption and gave an assurance that even senior officers will not go scot free if bribery charges against them are proved.
In the NOC episode, the Army had initially refused an NOC but senior officers reportedly reversed the decision. An NOC is mandatorily required for sale of land adjacent to military stations due to security reasons.