BSF jawan Tej Bahadur Yadav, who in January triggered an uproar by posting a video on Facebook alleging the poor quality of food served, has posted another video. In the new video, Yadav claimed to have been persecuted by the forces for exposing the corruption and has requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to intervene.
Yadav alleged in the video that his phone was taken away on 10 January and it may have been tampered with to show that he has contacts in Pakistan. "However, I request you not to believe any of these false rumours until I make a video myself,” BSF jawan said in the latest video.
He appealed to the prime minister to come out in his support as he is being targeted for exposing corruption. Yadav said, "I want to ask the prime minister that despite exposing the substandard quality of food, why am I am being tortured mentally?"
Yadav adds that he was following prime minister's goal of eradicating corruption when he uploaded the first video. “I request all of you to ask the prime minister if this is what a jawan gets in return for exposing corruption?”, Yadav said.
A BSF spokesperson said that a probe was still on, adding that no harassment was meted out to Yadav. “He is not in any confinement or being tortured. An investigation is under way about his earlier claims and proper action will be taken after the probe is over,” the spokesperson said, according to The Indian Express,
“The new video started circulating on WhatsApp around five days ago. Now, it has found its way to social media. The video was shot when his wife went to meet him in Jammu, following a petition in this regard in the Delhi high court. The curtains shown in the video are the ones put on the windows of the Jammu guesthouse where the meeting took place in the second week of February,” said a senior Border Security Force (BSF) official, according to Hindustan Times.
Hindustan Times reported the official saying, “When his wife went to meet him, she presented him a new phone that he is using. No work has been assigned to him and there are no restrictions on his movement also. There is due process of inquiry and his voluntary retirement application cannot be processed now due to pending inquiry against him.”
According to CNN-News18, both the BSF and the Ministry of Home Affairs have serious doubts about Tej Bahadur's motives behind airing his grievances on social media.
A top official in the Home Ministry, to which all paramilitary forces report, told CNN-News18 that he would have recommended the dismissal of Tej Bahadur for continually flouting the rules and posting videos on social media. "We don't interfere in the day-to-day management of the force. That is the BSF DG’s prerogative. But if I were the DG, I would have dismissed him. You can't breach discipline repeatedly," the official said.
Tej Bahadur Yadav had on 9 January posted a video on Facebook which showed a meal box comprising a watery soup-like dal, which he said had only turmeric and salt and a burnt chapatti. He had said this is what jawans were served at mealtime on duty at places including the Line of Control (LoC) with Pakistan and that jawans often went to bed on an empty stomach. He had also alleged that the senior officials illegally sold off the food supplies meant for the troopers.
Pursuant to the video going viral on the social media, the Prime Minister's Office had sought a detailed factual report on it from the Union Home Ministry and the Border Security Force (BSF).
A PIL was also filed in the Delhi High Court seeking a direction to the government to depute higher officers to supervise cooking of proper healthy food and its distribution. It sought a status report regarding the quality of food served to soldiers along the LoC.
The high court had issued notice on the petition to various paramilitary forces, including the BSF, seeking their stand on the allegation of poor quality of food being served to the troops. It had also directed BSF to produce before it the investigation report and the steps taken with regard to the allegations levelled by the BSF jawan.
Meanwhile, the Home Ministry has taken strong exception to the fresh video of Yadav and has asked the BSF to look into it as part of the inquiry. According to India.com, senior ministry official said Yadav has crossed the line of discipline and broken service rules by posting the second video.
The BSF in its preliminary enquiry had dismissed Bahadur's allegations. The final enquiry report is expected in three weeks.
The trooper faces an inquiry on various charges, including indiscipline. His plea for voluntary retirement was also rejected by the authorities.
With inputs from agencies
Firstpost is now on WhatsApp. For the latest analysis, commentary and news updates, sign up for our WhatsApp services. Just go to Firstpost.com/Whatsapp and hit the Subscribe button.
Updated Date: Mar 03, 2017 12:03 PM