Army Major Leetul Gogoi of the Rashtriya Rifles is detained in circumstances that are still unclear. Also detained with him was a woman and a local man.Initially, it was reported that the woman is minor but it is now confirmed that she was of over 18 years of age.
According to the police, they were summoned to Grand Mamta Hotel, where Gogoi had booked a room in his own name. The two locals came to the hotel and asked to go up to Gogoi’s room and got into an altercation with the hotel staff when they were not allowed. The hotel staff called the police.
Gogoi has been later released. He has rejoined his unit, police said, adding that the two locals were still being questioned. A police spokesperson said,“A police party was deputed to the hotel, and it surfaced that a woman and a man, Sameer Ahmed of Budgam, had come to see some person in the hotel. The hotel reception didn’t allow them to meet the person. All three were brought to the police station.” He added that they later learnt that the woman had come to meet an army officer.
While the police declined to name the army officer, the hotel owner said,”The room was booked online. A person came along with a local girl and sought (to go to) the room. Our hotel manager asked him for his identity and the identity of the girl. The girl was a local and according to our hotel policy we don’t provide rooms to local unmarried couples.”
Last April, during by-elections for the Srinagar Lok Sabha seat, Major Gogoi had tied a civilian, Farooq Ahmad Dar, to a bonnet of his jeep as a human shield to deter stone-pelters from targeting his troops. The incident led to a massive human rights controversy. Army Chief General Bipin Rawat awarded Gogoi a commendation card for his “sustained efforts” on counter-insurgency operations.