New Delhi: A celebrated, top Indian Navy (IN) doctor, currently posted in the capital is in the dock over accusations of molesting his female colleague, a junior naval medical officer.
In her complaint, the junior officer has accused her senior, a Surgeon Commander by rank, of having twice attempted molesting her over successive days earlier this month. Shockingly the first instance reported allegedly took place inside the residence of IN’s Chief of Personnel (COP) Vice Admiral AR Karve, where the duo had gone to treat the admiral’s ailing mother. The navy has taken cognisance and ordered a Board of Inquiry (BoI) – the first step in investigation of the alleged instance.
When the alleged incidents took place, the Surgeon Commander was posted at INS India, the establishment looking after administrative and logistical requirements of the navy in the national capital. Sources informed that the doctor has not been reporting to duty in recent days. The doctor was recently recognised for his meritorious service by the leadership of the IN.
“The first alleged instance occurred on Friday, May 6, when the lady officer sought to use the bathroom at Karve’s residence. After this, the Commanding Officer of INS India and senior authorities include Controller of Personnel Services (CPS) Rear Admiral KK Pandey were alerted by her. That it had no impact can be confirmed by the alleged second instance when the senior again made an approach. That was when the lady gave an ultimatum and authorities ordered a probe,” said a source.
The navy contested this and said there was no delay whatsoever. It also rejected allegations of being slow. Captain DK Sharma, IN spokesperson said, “We are seized of the matter and BoI was ordered immediately on receiving the complaint. Navy has a zero-tolerance outlook on such matters. Please wait for the enquiry to conclude and we can assure you that justice will be done.”
It was reliably learnt that the BOI report is soon to be handed over to the naval headquarters following which a final decision will be taken in the case.
What is also raising eyebrows is the place of occurrence. “Military doctors are not supposed to treat a patient at home. If the patient is in such a bad condition, then he/she should be in the hospital,” said a source. A military doctor, when asked to explain this anomaly, said, “There is a legal framework and there is a humanitarian framework. The later supersedes the former but the former still exists.” IN sources however said it was done keeping in mind the humanitarian aspect and given the seniority of the officer concerned.