The Army’s promotion board results for the ranks of Major General and Lt General have been inexplicably delayed which may result in many deserving officers losing their chance to get promoted and many may retire in their present rank itself.
The Army had conducted a selection board for the promotion of Major Generals to Lt Generals in April this year. It is learnt that there are around 17 vacancies for the rank of Lt Gen in the Command and Staff streams. As many as 65 Major Generals were considered for these vacancies.
According to sources in Army HQs, the Military Secretary’s branch had completed the formalities at the Army’s end and forwarded the board results to the Ministry of Defence in May itself. After the MoD gives the nod, the appointments are then put up to the Appointment Committee of the Cabinet for the final approval following which the promotion board results are de-c classified and the officers are promoted as per their seniority and merit.
These officers who will be cleared in this promotion board results will be cleared to pick up appointments in the Command as well as Staff Stream as per their merit. Those approved for Command stream will go on to command a Corps while the others will be posted to staff appointments in Army HQs or static formations like GOC of an Area, Chief of Staff of a Command or a staff appointment in Army HQs.
Normally the promotion board results are out within a period of two months. However, since the board results have been delayed by at least a month and, sources say, are not likely to be cleared within the next one month too, many officers stand to lose their chance at promotion because their date of retirement is approaching. Thus even if they are approved by the promotion board, they will not be able to pick up their rank.
The predicament is also acute for many officers who may not be able to command a corps despite having been approved in the Command Stream. This is because an officer needs to have a residual service of at least three years on the day the board results are declared in order to get the appointment of a General Officer Commanding of a Corps.
In fact, this is not the only category of officers affected by delay in announcement of promotion board results. Sources say the promotion board results of Brigadier to Major General rank have also been delayed.
In this instance, the board was held in the first week of May this year. There were 45 vacancies of Major Generals for which 125 Brigadiers were considered. Here again many officers will retire from service if the MoD does not de-classify the results soon.
Sources in MoD say that while the initial delay in declaring the results was because of the general elections and the wait for a new government to take over, the present delay is unexpected
Needless to say that many officers lower down in the merit for the rank of Major General and Lt General will immensely benefit if those in higher order of merit either retire from service or are over-age for some key appointments.
Sources inform that several officers are now planning to approach the Principal Bench of the Armed Forces Tribunal in
to seek legal remedy and to force the MS Branch of the Army HQs and the
Ministry of Defence to get speedily on this issue. New Delhi