7:41 pm - Tuesday July 16, 2019

“Stop Misuse Of Armed Forces’ Work In Polls”: Admiral L Ramdas, Ex-Navy Chief To EC

283 Viewed Jacob Martin Comments Off on “Stop Misuse Of Armed Forces’ Work In Polls”: Admiral L Ramdas, Ex-Navy Chief To EC

Former chief of naval staff, Admiral L Ramdas (retired), has written to the Election Commission of India (ECI) expressing “concern” and “dismay” over what he sees as the misuse of the air strike in Pakistan to “influence the electorate”.

In an open letter to Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora, Admiral Ramdas expressed concerns on “recent instances” of parties using armed forces’ heroics for political gains.

Admiral Ramdas led the Indian Navy from 1990 to 1993 and was part of naval blockade of East Pakistan during the 1971 Bangladesh Liberation War. The operation, one of the most effective naval blockades, prevented Pakistan from evacuating over 90,000 soldiers from Bangladesh. They eventually surrendered before the Indian Army. Ramdas was awarded the Vir Chakra for his role in the 1971 Bangladesh Liberation War.

Criticising the use of armed force to garner votes, the former admiral has said the “recent instances of using the Armed Forces for political gains, especially in the aftermath of both Pulwama in which 40 CRPF jawans lost their lives and the strikes in Balakot” is against the ethos of the armed forces.

In his two-page letter, the former Navy chief said the armed forces have always prided themselves on belonging to a structure, an ethos and an environment which have been both apolitical and secular.The armed forces, Ramdas has said in the letter, are “a-political” and have always followed “secular” ethos.

The former Navy chief said it was completely unacceptable since it has the potential to destroy the very foundations and value system of the armed forces, drawn from the vision, the spirit and intent of the Constitution.

“We, therefore, urge the Election Commission to immediately intervene and send a strong message to the political parties that there should be no misuse of the photographs as indeed any other material/reports or other information pertaining to the armed forces for electioneering in any way,” he said.

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