New Delhi, April, 23, PTI: The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed a public interest litigation (PIL) challenging the appointment of Lt Gen Bikram Singh as the next army chief.
“We don't find justifiable ground to entertain the petition,” a bench of Justices RM Lodha and HL Gokhale said after studying the file relating to Gen Bikram Singh’s appointment.
However, the court said dismissal of the petition shall not affect any pending proceedings against Lt Gen Singh.
Earlier in the day, while hearing the PIL, filed by a group of retired officers and bureaucrats, including former navy chief Admiral Laxminarayan Ramdas and former Chief Election Commissioner N Gopalaswamy, the court had asked the government to submit the file that the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet had considered before clearing Gen Bikram Singh as the next army chief.
After studying the file, the court opined that the government had gone through all allegations against Gen Singh before clearing his appointment.
The PIL had cited a case pending in Jammu and Kashmir against Gen Bikram Singh and that he was involved in a fake encounter in 2001.
The PIL also alleges that Gen Bikram Singh erred by omission during his tenure as leader of a UN Peace Keeping Mission in Congo in 2008. A group of Indian Army officers and soldiers are being investigated for illicit relations with Congolese women while on the mission.
The PIL also alleged a communal bias in the appointment of Gen Bikram Singh.