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'Wife swapping' in Navy: Antony orders dismissal of tainted officer

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13 Apr 2013, 04:04 PM
Amid 'wife swap' row, Naval officer sacked
Amid 'wife swap' row, Naval officer sacked

New Delhi: A day after he ordered dismissal of a Navy officer found guilty of having illicit relations with the wife of his superior, Defence Minister A K Antony on Saturday said that no leniency would be shown to anyone found guilty on the complaint filed by officer's wife alleging that she had been harassed by her husband and his seniors.

"The Defence Ministry treats this type of complaint very seriously. An inquiry will be conducted and strict action, including dismissal, will be initiated against anyone found guilty," Antony said.

"I have sought a report from the Navy on the complaint and the probe is not yet over," Antony told reporters after commissioning the Ex-servicemen Contributory Health Services online bill processing scheme at the Southern Naval Command.

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The order of dismissal of the officer, who is a Lieutenant Commander (equivalent to a Major in the Army), from service was approved by Antony on the basis of the inquiry report submitted by the Naval Headquarters on charges against him, defence sources said.

In addition to the Navy's probe, two parallel investigations were progressing - one by Delhi Police and another by Kerala Police, Antony said, adding that so it will not be proper to say more now.

The dismissal of the officer came at a time when the Navy is in the midst of dealing with a police complaint by the wife of a Navy officer in Kochi accusing his seniors and colleagues of sexual harassment. The woman also made 'wife swapping' charges.

The incident at the Southern Naval Command came to light after the woman filed the complaint with local Harbour Police, which registered a case against 10 people, including her husband, under Sec 498 (enticing or taking away or detaining with criminal intent a married woman) of IPC on April 4.

In her complaint, the woman stated that she was "tortured" for dowry, and seniors and colleagues of her husband had attempted to molest her.

The Navy had denied her charges saying the complaint was the result of "a marital discord" and the allegations raised by the woman against "superior officers" were "unfair".

Taking serious view of the allegations levelled by the officer's wife, Defence Minister A K Antony had ordered the Navy to submit a report in this regard.

The Navy has been consistently defending its officers and issued a statement saying "the wife of the officer has levelled unfair allegations against superior officers in her husband's chain of command, their spouses and other officers who have interacted with her."

"These officers accompanied by their respective spouses had tried to unsuccessfully resolve the issues dogging the couple's personal life in a bid to leverage the strength of the Naval community bond," it had said.

The Navy has also promised full cooperation to the ongoing police investigations into the case.

(JPN/Agencies)

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