Army orders court of inquiry into jawans leaving unit

The Army Friday ordered a court of inquiry into jawans of an armoured regiment in Patiala leaving their unit around a fortnight ago and moving back to their regimental centre in Ahmednagar after allegedly being ordered to perform "menial taks". It also claimed that 10 jawans in all had left the unit but since rejoined.

The Indian Express reported the incident Thursday. Attempts made to reach the Army's western command through a detailed questionnaire and over the phone had failed to draw any response.

On Friday, the Army informed the media that a probe had been ordered into the incident. It also denied that the jawans had been ordered to perform "menial tasks", saying "they were asked to clean their personal weapons and undergo Battle Physical Efficiency Test, which has to be done by all combatants, being a routine bona fide military duty". "The Army has ordered a court of inquiry. Any more details cannot be divulged," Col Bakshi, media officer, western command, said.

Sources had told The Indian Express that over a dozen soldiers belonging to 56 Armoured Regiment had moved out as a mark of protest against "ill-treatment" at the hands of certain superior officers.

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