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Army denies it tried to bug V.K. Singh’s house

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The Army Headquarters on Saturday dismissed the claim by General V.K. Singh’s family that it tried to bug its house. In a statement, it said that the Army officer “detained” by the former Army chief’s family had gone there to remove a telephone exchange as part of withdrawal of Gen. Singh’s Z-plus security category with effect from November last year.

After the controversy broke out, Delhi Area Commander Lt. Gen. Subroto Mitra went to Gen. Singh’s house here at Mandir Marg in the Delhi Cantonment after which the matter was “sorted out amicably,” the Army Headquarters said, adding that Lt. Gen. Mitra had expressed regret for the inconvenience caused.

‘Communication gap’

“Due to a communication gap somewhere, a Signals Regiment party went to remove the Army exchange and lines at the Mandir Marg house of Gen. V.K. Singh. Mrs. V.K. Singh objected to the removal of the exchange without prior notice,” the Army said in a statement, and added: “The lack of advance information caused slight resentment. The matter was amicably resolved by [the] intervention of [the]GOC Delhi Area. The Army respects all its retired Chiefs and senior officers and will continue to do so.”

In deference to Mrs. Singh’s objection, the team returned without removing the exchange. The house was provided to Gen. Singh by the Defence Ministry for one year after he retired on May 31 last year.

The Army said the officer talked to Gen. Singh’s daughter to take directions for establishing direct lines in the house and also got her to talk to the Commanding Officer of his unit.

Gen. Singh has himself been in the midst of a row following allegations that during his tenure as Army Chief he had used sophisticated off-the-air interceptors to snoop on officials of Defence Ministry at the height of the controversy over his age.

The specialised unit Technical Support Division is now being disbanded.

Gen Singh, who was in Gujarat at the time of the incident, arrived here on Saturday evening. — PTI


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