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Army places Purohit under disciplinary ban

November 11, 2008 15:00 IST

With the Maharashtra police arresting Lieutenant Colonel Shrikant Purohit in the Malegaon blast case, the Army has placed him under a Discipline-Vigilance Ban that would ensure he gets no promotions or new postings and also relieved him of current responsibilities.

The ban, a routine order which came the day the Anti-Terror Squad took him into custody for questioning, would be enforced till the time the probe is completed and a report, either indicting Purohit or exonerating him in the case, is submitted, Army sources said in New Delhi [Images] on Tuesday.

'There are no communal feelings in the army'

Till the time a competent court of law acquits him in the case, the ban would continue, but Purohit would be entitled to his emoluments and also retain official accommodation till then.

Purohit, a Military Intelligence officer, was last studying a couple of foreign languages in the Army Education Corps school at Pachmarhi in Madhya Pradesh [Images], from where he was sent into ATS custody by the Army for questioning with regard to his alleged role in the September 29 Malegaon blast.

Meanwhile, as announced by Defence Minister A K Antony recently, the Army also began an internal scrutiny of Purohit's service to determine if the record matched with unsolved incidents that may come to light and if he misused his military postings to help the main accused in the Malegaon case, sources said.

 'There is no such thing as Hindu terrorism'

His service record was being checked to see if any arms, ammunition or explosives went missing or were stolen at a unit when he was posted there, sources added.

Also, the army was questioning his colleagues, who served alongside him at different postings as a Liaison Unit officer, including at Nashik.

In particular, the army was interested in finding out when and where Purohit came in contact with one of the accused, retired Major Ramesh Upadhyaya, in the case, the sources said.

Pushing Hindus into a corner

The army, in a departure from tradition, was also scrutinising Purohit's leave schedules during his service and has shared the leave records with the ATS, the sources added.

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