The Army has initiated General Courts Martial (GCM) proceedings against a Brigadier in Bengal on the charges of committing adultery with the wife of a Colonel, reported Indian Express.

The court martial is being held at HQs 111 Sub Area in Bengdubi military station in Bengal. The Brigadier, who was commanding an Infantry Brigade under the Eastern Command, has been attached with the military station for standing trial.

Sources in Eastern Command Headquarters in Kolkata informed The Indian Express that Maj Gen RS Bhadauria, General Officer Commanding (GOC) of an Mountain Division has been appointed as the Presiding Officer of the court martial while six other officers of the rank of Brigadier have been appointed as members of the GCM. Col Gaurav Arora is the Judge Advocate of the trial and he would be guiding the members of the GCM on the legal aspects of the trial.

The Brigadier facing trial is reportedly being tried on 17 charges which include 11 pertaining to Section 497 of the IPC read in conjunction with Section 69 of the Army Act, four of Section 62 and two of Section 57 of the Army Act.

While Section 69 deals with cases which involve civil offences, Section 62 pertains to “Violation of Good Order and Military Discipline” and Section 57 is applied in cases pertaining to “Falsifying of official documents”.

Earlier, a Court of Inquiry and Summary of Evidence had been held against the officer following which directions were issued to try him by a court martial after sufficient evidence was presented. A complaint had been lodged against the Brigadier following which the Army had ordered disciplinary proceedings against him.

Meanwhile, in a similar case, the Army is conducting Summary of Evidence, a quasi-judicial process, against a Colonel who has been accused by another Colonel of “stealing the affections of brother officer’s wife”. The proceedings are taking place in an Army unit in New Delhi. The accused faces five charges of Section 497 of the IPC dealing with the offence of adultery.

In this case the Court of Inquiry used technical evidence gathered through detailed analysis of phone call records, mobile tower locations and Whatsapp messages to establish the “illicit relations between the accused and another officer’s wife”. ‘Stealing the affection of brother’s wife’ is a serious offence under the Army Act and is punishable by five years rigorous imprisonment.

The complainant, a Colonel who was commanding an infantry battalion in Jammu and Kashmir, made the complaint through a demi official letter dated August 13, 2015 addressed to the then Brigade Commander with a copy to General Officer Commanding 19 Infantry Division, General Officer Commanding 15 Corps, Director General National Cadet Corps, General Officer Commanding in Chief, Northern Command, the then Chief of the Army Staff General Dalbir Singh and the then Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar.

In his letter, he had alleged that another officer of the rank of Colonel, who was from his battalion and under whom he had served for several years in the past and was now posted in NCC, had been sending indecent messages to his wife which were sexually explicit in nature. He said that he then had reasons to believe that both were involved in illicit relations. Based on the complaint, a Court of Inquiry was ordered by Headquarters Delhi Area in 2015.