Published: February 15, 2020 2:49:48 am
The Armed Forces Tribunal has ordered the Navy to promote an officer, Commander S S Luthra, who was trained as a nuclear submarine specialist and had taken premature retirement after being denied a promotion.
The officer had alleged that his Vice Admiral overlooked him as he wanted to promote his son-in-law, the only submarine engineer who was promoted. He alleged the Vice Admiral “deliberately reduced” his numerical assessment while increasing his son-in-law’s assessment to ensure “his son-in-law takes a march over others”.
The tribunal has decided that the officer, who was a commander till he retired prematurely in April 2017, will be given a notional promotion to the rank of captain and will be entitled to all benefits, including pay and pension of a captain.
This is the second time a tribunal has given a judgment in Luthra’s favour. In 2017, the Navy was asked to conduct a fresh promotion board, but even then Luthra was not promoted. The tribunal, in its February 12 judgment, said “clearly, arbitrariness, contrary to policy and the principles of natural justice, is writ large in the proceedings of the Special Review Board and the same, therefore, is liable to be set aside”. All arrears are to be paid to Luthra within four months.
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