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A jawan's plea claiming he should not be posted in operational areas to fight the enemy if he has been classified as a non-combatant, has prompted the Supreme Court to seek the government's response. A bench of Justices R F Nariman and S K Kaul issued notice to the Centre and sought its reply in four weeks on the petition of Army Service Corps (ASC) Major Amod Kumar against his posting to counter-insurgency unit Rashtriya Rifles, a combat unit, when the Army considered him a non-combatant for promotion purpose. He contended that Army could not be permitted to take a dual stand -- treating an ASC officer as 'operational' for postings, but branding him 'non-operational' for promotion. His petition said "Services officers are routinely deployed in operational areas despite the Army authorities holding them to be 'non-operational'.
The petitioner cannot be compelled to serve in an operational area and to do so is in violation of his fundamental right and principles of natural justice.
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