The Army has sacked a major who eloped with a brother officer's wife, faked suicide and deserted the force. By his astuteness and cunning, Major Anurag Sharma, a surgeon, had almost convinced the army that he was swept away in the monstrous swells of the Brahmaputra last June.
But the military intelligence (MI) smelled a rat when it emerged that a lieutenant colonel's wife had also gone missing from Tinsukhia in Assam around the same time. Sharma, then posted at 162 Military Hospital, had planned his moves carefully and acted upon the conviction that the odds of ‘success’ lay in his favour.
While still married to an army lady doctor (Major), who was then posted in Sudan as part of the UN peacekeeping force there, Sharma ended up in an adulterous relationship. His paramour's husband, an artillery officer, was also serving with a UN mission.
Blinded by his passion, Sharma schemed to make his disappearance look like suicide. Police recovered his abandoned car and a note saying he was depressed, on the bank of the river in Dibrugarh. Had the MI not been thinking one step ahead of the disgraced officer, Sharma could never have been brought back from the ‘dead’.
Rigourous investigations followed his disappearance. Army sources said leads obtained from Sharma’s phone calls were followed up by surveillance of his hometown, Sangli in Maharashtra. His lie was exposed when he was caught last September. Sharma has a six-year-old son while the woman has a boy aged 12.
Sharma was put under arrest and tried by a general court martial, headed by deputy general officer commanding of the Dinjan-based HQs 2 Mountain Division last December. Holding him guilty, the military court cashiered him from service — military jargon for loss of rank and retirement benefits.