Former Army Chief Gen V K Singh today failed to appear before a Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Council panel over his controversial remarks against state leaders, after which fresh summons were issued to him for January 22.
Singh failed to appear before the Privileges Committee to explain his position on his allegations that politicians in the state were paid by the Army, prompting the panel to issue a summons to him through the Haryana DGP.
However, an aide of Singh claimed that he had written to the Privileges Committee, which did not accept his reply and asked him to appear before it in person.
"The Committee, under the chairmanship of Jugal Kishore Sharma, has decided to issue summons to him (Singh) through the Haryana Director General of Police to appear before this Committee on 22nd of this month at 2:30 PM," member of the privilege committee, Devender Singh Rana told reporters after the conclusion of the meeting here.
Rana, who is a ruling National Conference MLC and Chief Minister Omar Abdullah's confidante, said "failing this, necessary action under law which is available to us will be taken against him."
Col U B Singh, a friend of Gen Singh, however, told reporters at the Legislative Council, "Singh had sent a proper reply to the Privilege Committee. But they have not taken it into consideration and refused to accept it."
When Rana was asked about this, he said "There is no reply we have received as yet."
On December 9, last year, Privileges Committee had asked Singh to appear in person before it on January 9 to explain his position on his controversial remarks.
The privilege motion against Gen Singh was moved by MLCs Ajay Sadhotra, Rana and Khalid Najeeb Suhrawardy in the last session of the Council, taking cognisance of his allegations during a TV interview in which he had claimed that Army was paying money to politicians in Jammu and Kashmir.
Giving details of today's meeting, Rana said, "The committee met today under the chairmanship of Jugal Kishore Sharma. Gen V K Singh preferred not to appear before the Committee."
He directed that the copies of the summons be sent to the Speaker and officials of Haryana.
"As per the summons issued now, the law is very clear on what all measures can be taken to secure his presence before the Committee," he said.
Meanwhile, Singh's aide said security personnel had asked local contact Yashpal, who had come to deliver the reply, that he should come in person.
"I am not authorised by Singh to represent him here. The Committee did not even consider his reply. They should have accepted it," he said.
Gen (retd) Singh was summoned by the Committee to appear before it at around 1145 hours today, when the Marshal of Legislative Council took name of the former Army Chief at the Gate of Council complex in front of the media.
The Chairman of the panel Sharma (Congress), Ghulam Nabi Monga (Congress), NC's Ali Mohammad Dar and Rana attended the meeting, while Congress MLC Ravinder Sharma was in Delhi due to illness of his family member.