Karnataka : The Indian Army has dismissed a Muslim soldier who insisted on sporting a beard on religious grounds. The Army termed him an "undesirable soldier" and his dismissal was upheld by an Armed Forces Tribunal bench in Kochi recently. The Armed Forces do not allow any soldier to sport a permanent beard, except in the case of Sikhs.
It was in 2001, that Jawan Maktumhusen had requested his Commanding Officer (CO) to allow him to grow a beard on religious grounds. He got the requisite permission, but the CO only realised later that they had gone against the new amendments to the rules and withdrew the permission asking Maktumhusen to comply.
Meanwhile, he transferred to Pune's Command Hospital, where his new CO also asked him to shave his beard. When Maktumhusen refused again, a show-cause notice was issued against him, after which he was sentenced to a 14-day detention for disobedience. Following an inquiry, he was discharged from service. Maktumhusen's counsel said he may move the Supreme Court now.