Chandigarh: Backing the Army Major who had strapped a stone pelter to a jeep purportedly as a shield against a mob in Kashmir, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh has said he would have done the same had he been in his place.
Singh, who served in the Army in the mid 1960s, said Major Leetul Gogoi exemplified a high level of presence of mind and daring, and that the Army cannot be expected to deal with such "stone-pelting mobs with one hand tied behind their backs".
Major Gogoi has been awarded the Chief of Army Staff's Commendation Card for his sustained efforts in counter-insurgency operations.
The chief minister lashed out at those asking for the officer's court-martial, saying they clearly had no inkling of the way the Army works and the traditions which continue to make it a unique institution rooted in a distinctive culture of valour and courage.
Singh, who was the first to demand an award for the daring Major, hailed the Army for backing him despite criticism in certain quarters of his action "as it was important to send out a strong signal to show that the Indian Army was neither weak nor were our officers underdogs".
While he upheld the importance of human rights in a civilized society, Singh asserted that human rights could not be allowed to be used as a shield for lawlessness.
The security personnel who risk their lives every day for protecting the common people of the land also have human rights, he said.
Updated Date: May 24, 2017 09:40:33 IST