By Express News Service
Col Ajay Dogra of the Army Air Defence was posted as the UN Staff officer in the United Nations Headquarters in 2017. The officer was taking up a course when an international participant tried to undermine Indian troops posted in Sudan and Congo and accused them of sexual harassment of natives.
Col Dogra defended the Indian army and opposed and reprimanded the participant. This led to heated arguments, and feeling humiliated on getting checked, the participant complained of misbehaviour against Col Dogra to settle scores.
Following due procedure, the UN conducted its enquiry. The Indian Army also carried out its internal investigations into the matter. All participants who were present in the course supported Col Dogra. The UN and Indian enquiries also did not find anything adverse against him.
Later, the UN not only rewarded the officer with a medal but also marked him as ‘Outstanding’ and ‘Best Officer of the team’ in their final performance report.
This paper in its editions dated September 2 and 3, 2017, published two stories that Col Dogra was accused by UN participants for sexual harassment and was repatriated to India to face an inquiry. The Indian Army in its rebuttal on Sept 4, 2017, clarified that the story was based on incorrect facts and not only had grave errors but was also defamatory.
The official records of UN and the Indian Army clearly show that the officer was not at fault. The paper takes full responsibility for the stories and agrees to take down all articles and posts related to this publication from our servers.
Col Dogra has always been an upright, outstanding and self-made officer of the Indian Army. The officer did his schooling from Sainik School Sujanpur Tira and joined the National Defence Academy. He was awarded Commendation card for ‘retrieving two drowned girls at the risk of his life’ from a mountain cave when he was just 14.
He became a Battalion Under Officer in IMA and passed out first in the order of merit of all officers commissioned in the corps of Army Air Defence. He continued his hard work in service and topped most of Army courses and won trophies like Rohit Chikara Trophy, Gen Bakshi Trophy.
He served on the Line of Control as staff officer and did instructional tenure in AD College. He has handled both failure and success with same equanimity. After unfortunately missing out on staff college in his first attempt, he cleared the exam in the Competitive Merit List and passed out with the highest scores.
The highlight of his career in the Indian Army has been selection and posting to the prestigious Military Secretary Branch which looks after career progression and promotions of all officers of the Indian Army. The branch sets highest standards for its integrity and professionalism and is regarded as the epitome of success in one’s career.
The officer was later selected on merit from the Indian army and was offered a vacancy of Staff officer in the United Nations. He competed with officers from 193 nations and made the country proud by not only clearing the written test and verbal interview but also full profile checks.
He earned his name by his hard work in UN and came back with flying colours. We are proud of the Indian Army and its ethos and salute officers like Col Dogra who stand for the nation and the Army wherever they are.