New Delhi, Oct 20 : The Delhi High Court has issued notice to four serving Indian Army officers in a defamation case filed by Lt. Gen. (retd) Tejinder Singh against a trial court order exempting their personal appearance.

Lt. Gen. Tejinder Singh moved the high court challenging the order of the trial court that allowed permanent exemption from personal appearance to the four accused serving officers.

Justice P.K. Bhasin Friday issued notice to the four officers and sought their reply by Feb 15, the next date of hearing.

Lt. Gen. Tejinder Singh had filed a defamation case against former army chief, Gen. V.K. Singh, and the four army officers for allegedly making libellous statements against him to the media and accusing him of bribery in an all-terrain truck purchase deal of the army.

He sought the setting aside of the trial court's order granting permanent exemption from appearance after the four officers pleaded that their presence in court will prevent them from discharging of their public duty.

Lt. Gen. Tejinder Singh alleged that the officers misused their official position, power and authority to level false charges against him.

Alleging that the officers misused their official position, power and authority to level false charges against him, Lt. Gen. Tejinder Singh named the former army chief, Army Vice Chief Lt. Gen. S.K. Singh, Director General Military Intelligence Lt. Gen. B.S. Thakur, Additional Director General Public Information Major Gen S.L. Narsimhan and Directorate General of Public Information Staff Officer Lt. Col. Hitten Sawhney.

The former army chief had disclosed in a press release that he was offered a kickback of Rs.14 crore by a retired defence officer in exchange for clearing a tranche of 600 sub-standard vehicles.

Denying all the allegations, Lt. Gen. Tejinder Singh had said that in the press release of March 5 the army headquarters publicly accused him and a group of serving officers of the Military Intelligence (MI) of conspiring to create a rift between the army chief and the government.

The army said the "fabricated fiction" was put out by a group of disgruntled serving officers of MI working in connivance with a retired lieutenant general who had headed the defence intelligence agency.


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