On July 7 in Nganglam, Pemagatshel, a Royal Bhutan Army (RBA) soldier was shot in his thigh and abdomen by a colleague who was a chronic alcoholic. It had been two days since the suspect stopped drinking alcohol and he was having withdrawal symptoms when the incident happened.

According to a RBA source, the suspect had been placed under low medical category S3 by RBA medical officers on June 15. A person with psychological/psychiatric related disorders are placed under medical category S. A military person placed in medical category S3 is fit only for sedentary duties, without arms, under supervision. He is not fit for duties involving independent responsible tasks including patrolling and sentry duties with arms.

On that day, the victim had kept his weapon in the guardroom and was cleaning the surrounding area when the suspect managed to grab the weapon and fired at him.

The victim was immediately airlifted to Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital in Thimphu the same day. He underwent a surgery and is presently in stable condition.

RBA headquarters have deputed an inquiry team to Nganglam.

Staff Reporter