SC upholds termination of army officers in Samba spy case

New Delhi: The Supreme Court has upheld the Government of India’s  decision to terminate services of army officers who were allegedly caught spying for Pakistan in 1978 in the infamous Samba spy case.
A three-judge bench headed by Justice B S Chauhan said there is no evidence produced by the ex-officers to show that the decision to terminate their jobs was mala fide.
“In the instant case, on perusal of the link file it is further revealed that detailed investigation was conducted and all evidence recorded were examined by the Intelligence Department and finally the authority came to the finding that retention of these officers were not expedient in the interest and security of the State,” the bench said.
“In our view, sufficiency of ground cannot be questioned, particularly in a case where termination order is issued by the President under the pleasure doctrine,” it said.
The apex court overturned the Delhi High Court’s order of 2010 which set aside the termination order of ex-officers Major SP Sharma, Captain Arun Sharma, Major Ajwani and Major R K Midha.
“We have minutely perused all the records including notings along with link file produced by the Additional Solicitor General. On perusal and scrutiny of all those materials we are of the view that the High Court has committed a grave error of record and there is total non-application of mind in recording the findings,” it said. “The safety and security of the country is above all. When the President terminated the services of army officers, whose service tenure is at the pleasure of the President and such termination is based on material on record, then this court in exercise of powers of judicial review should be slow in interfering with the President exercising constitutional power,” the bench said. – PTI

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