Thursday, May 31, 2012

Army Chief General VK Singh retires

Army Chief General VK Singh retires, lays wreath at Amar Jawan Jyoti
NDTV Correspondent | Updated: May 31, 2012 11:28 IST

New Delhi: General VK Singh retires as army chief today. His term began in May 2010. General Bikram Singh will replace him as the Chief of the Army Staff today.
The out-going chief laid a wreath at the Amar Jawan Jyoti, a memorial for the Indian soldiers. He will then be given a guard of honour in the lawns of South Block. After this, he will be treated as an ordinary citizen.
General Bikram Singh will formally begin his tenure a little after 11 am.
General VK Singh's last year in office saw an unprecedented tension between the government and the army. General Singh became the first serving chief to take the government to court to demand that his records be corrected to reflect that he was born a year later than documented in some papers. He dropped his case in the Supreme Court after judges indicated they would not rule in his favour. Had he won his case, General VK Sing would have been eligible for another year in office.
In the last three months, a confidential letter from him to the PM, warning of serious deficiencies in the equipment used by the defence forces was leaked. General VK Singh has said that the leak was not orchestrated by the army. Early inquiries by the Intelligence Bureau seem to support this. Another whopper of a storm was created when General Singh said in an interview that he had been offered a bribe of Rs. 14 crores, just months after he took office, to clear "sub-standard" trucks for purchase by the army.
General VK Singh also faces a defamation suit for a press release that he sanctioned earlier this year which alleged that a retired officer, Tejinder Singh, had circumvented guidelines needed to order of-the-air monitoring equipment. The same statement said that Tejinder Singh was offering bribes on behalf of Tatra and Vectra, which supplies trucks to the army. The press release was issued amid reports that the army had tried to spy on the Defence Minister's office in the weeks before General VK Singh took the government to court. Tejinder Singh has sued the army chief over the press release. And 24 hours before he retired, the Defence Ministry authorized a detailed inquiry into the incident, suggesting that the confrontations between General VK Singh and the government will continue.
Army Chief General VK Singh retires, lays wreath at Amar Jawan Jyoti

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