The regional bench of the Armed Forces Tribunal (AFT) has directed the Uttarakhand Police to lodge an FIR against a man who served the Indian Army for 34 years, impersonating his brother.
The imposter was exposed when he applied for getting his PAN linked with pension and so did his brother who had also retired from the Army.
The case relates to one Narain Singh who got himself enrolled in the Army as Shyam Singh on November 30, 1982. He joined the 13 Guards Battalion as a soldier. Singh retired on June 30, 2001, as Naik.
He later re-enrolled in the defence security corps (DSC) on March 3, 2002, and was discharged on July 1, 2018, after rendering more than 16-years of service.
With two retirements, he was eligible for two pensions. He had linked his permanent account number (PAN) and Aadhaar with his bank account while in the DSC service.
However, in May 2017, his army pension was stopped after the bank found two permanent account number (PAN) cards with the same name (Shyam Singh), same father’s name (Madan Singh) and same date of birth (July 11, 1963) but with two different individual pictures.
Later his DSC pension too was stopped.
During investigations, it came to light that Shyam Singh is the name of the accused’s younger brother, who too served the Army with 6 Mechanized infantry.
He joined on March 15, 1982, and served for 20-years before retiring on January 31, 2002, as Havaldar.
In April 2017, the SBI’s Kashipur branch (Udham Singh Nagar district) asked real Shyam Singh to link his PAN with the bank following which it was found that imposter Shyam Singh had already linked PAN with SBI’s Rampur branch of Almora district.
Thereafter bank officials stopped the pension of the two siblings.
After a four-year-long trial, the AFT Lucknow bench ordered Uttarakhand Police to lodge an FIR against accused Narain Singh.
The court observed that accused Narain Singh had used his younger brother’s fifth-grade mark sheet to enrol in the Indian Army.
However, agricultural land records and ration card entries had his name as Narain Singh. He used his brother’s PAN card details to link with the pension payment order (PPO) for disbursement of pension.
Lt. Col. (retired) Seemit Kumar, the joint registrar of AFT Lucknow said, “The case of impersonator never would have come into the light, had the PAN card was not linked to bank and PPO.”
The judgement in the case came on Wednesday and a copy of the order was released on Thursday.