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Army Warns Ex-Soldiers of Non-Payment of Pensions, Police Cases Over Social Media Posts

'In the recent past, several instances have come to light where the conduct of some ex-servicemen has tarnished the Army’s image,' the letter sent to all Army commands says.

New Delhi: The Indian Army has warned former soldiers of punitive action including non-payment of their pension and police cases if they make social media posts on issues which have been deemed “false” and have the potential to cause disharmony and tarnish the image of the forces, The Tribune has reported.

The newspaper said that the Additional Director General, Discipline and Vigilance (under the Adjutant General’s office) sent a letter to all severn Army commands in May, explaining this and for “further action.”

“In the recent past, several instances have come to light where the conduct of some ex-servicemen has tarnished the Army’s image,” the letter mentions. The instances include use of social media for creating propaganda and spreading canards about the Army, especially targeting the officer cadre…Some posts aim at inciting and converging public opinion on matters related to service life, conditions and privileges,” the letter says, according to the report.

The letter reminds former servicepersons of relevant Indian Penal Code’s provisions and Section 131 of the Army Act, 1950, which entails life imprisonment for anyone “abetting committing of mutiny by an officer or a soldier”. It also asks local military commanders to “keep an eye” on such posts and register first information reports with local police.

The letter also claims that the speech used in social media campaigns is “mostly hateful, always malicious and potentially mutinous.”

These posts are misleading and “influence the mindset of the public,” it claims.