"All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others"
A unique investigation is underway by the Ministry of Defence regarding misuse of CSD smart cards by senior retired officers of the Army.
As per the information relayed, data is being collected on the gross misuse of gold cards which are allotted to retired Chief of Army Staff along with the officers of the rank of Army Commanders. The investigation by MoD has revealed that some senior retired officers are in possession of more than one smart card. These Gold cards entitle them to unlimited purchase through CSD.
It is learnt that the Army HQs too is seized of the matter and it is being ascertained as to how more than one such card was issued in first place and where and at which CSD canteen were these being used. It is learnt that very heavy purchases were being effected by these cards every month and that this has raised eyebrows.
The fact that retired service chiefs names have also surfaced in the course of the digging up of data, has left the Army HQs a but surprised.
However, all those who may jump to conclusions and start pointing accusatory fingers at the retired brass of the rank of Army Commanders and COAS, there are a few good men left still. The MoD has found that there are many officers who chose not to avail the facility of unlimited purchase given by the Gold Card. I have been able to find out the names of two such individuals who has chosen to surrender their Gold cards and have asked that they be provided the normal purchase power as due to their rank.
My sources inform me that two such officers are Lt Gen HS Panag (retd), former Northern and Central Army Commander and Lt Gen AK Singh (retd) who has recently retired from service as Southern Army Commander.
Individuals like these deserve to be saluted for their honest and upright approach. Equally, one would like the names of those to be made public, those who have more than one privelege card and have been making purchases worth an atrocious sums of money. Normally the Army would very easily deny that any such thing has happened. However, since the investigation is being done by the MoD, there is slim chance of the Army spin dims getting a chance of cover-up.
All such mindless cards should be immediately withdrawn and only the purchase limit authorised by rank should be put into effect. There should not be any silly limitless purchase power because it lends itself to misuse and this is precisely what has been happening.
The Ministry of Defence will do well to institute corrective action and immediately withdraw or cancel the Gold Cards.