An Indian Navy official has been put on trial by a Delhi court for allegedly conspiring with Pakistani agencies and passing them sensitive documents and information regarding establishment of armed forces.
The court framed charges against Chand Kumar Prasad under provisions of the IPC for conspiring and the Official Secret Act (OSA) and fixed March 15 for recording prosecution evidence in the case.
"Vide separate order, order on charge is passed. Let the charge be framed under the provisions of Official Secret Act and 120B IPC,"Additional Sessions Judge Daya Prakash said.
The provisions of OSA for which Prasad, who was arrested from New Delhi Railway Station in 2010, has been put on trial entails a maximum of 14 years jail term.
The court said perusal of the charge sheet, the recovered articles and disclosure of Prasad showed that the charge of spying is made out against him and there was sufficient material to frame charges against him.
"As per the concerned agency, these documents were classified documents. Hence charge under... of the OSA is made out," it said.
The judge said, "Whatever accused has done as alleged by the investigating agency, he has done along with other operatives of Pakistani Secret Agencies. Simply because they are not before this court for facing trial does not absolve the accused from the charge under section 120B IPC.
"What is relevant for the purpose of charge under section 120B IPC is that he acted in conspiracy," the court said.
The court rejected the contention of Prasad that he was the sole accused in the case, so he cannot be charged for criminal conspiracy.
The prosecutor told the court that Prasad was in possession of photographs of confidential documents of Indian Navy, having information about its movement and secret operations.
He also said Prasad was having the restricted documents containing the visit schedule of Chief of Naval Operations of US Navy with his staff and another was on the schedule of visit of Union Defence Minister A K Antony on the occasion of launching of indigenously designed third ship of project 15 (Chennai).
Prasad, a mechanic, was arrested by the Special Cell of Delhi Police in 2010 from New Delhi Railway Station on information that an official of Indian Navy, who was allegedly involved in supplying classified/confidential documents of Navy to Pakistani agencies, would be arriving here in a train from Ahmedabad and would be carrying secret documents.
When Prasad was caught by the police, he was unable to explain possession of certain documents including two diaries having details of Indian Armed Forces, two mobile phones and three memory cards.
The prosecutor told the court that memory cards contained photographs of confidential documents of the Navy.
He claimed that during the probe, Prasad had admitted that he used to provide secret/classified documents relating to Indian Navy to agents of Pakistani Intelligence Agency in Nepal in lieu of which he was given money.
The police alleged that he had met one Pakistani Masoom Alam in November, 2008 and also received repeated calls in February, 2009. Thereafter, he again met them in Nepal in 2009, the prosecutor said in the court, adding that the accused had also stolen some documents from his office.
During that period, the accused received calls from the Pakistan Intelligence Operatives and after fixing a meeting with them, he had supplied the original documents to them, the prosecutor said.
He said Prasad had also received Rs 25,000 from Masoom after he photocopied all the documents.
The prosecutor said that in November, 2009 the accused after availing leave, returned to Mumbai and joined duty at INS Angre in Mumbai and he used to note down all the activities in his diary as also photographs of the place in his mobile.
The court noted in its order that Prasad has refused to accept the copy of the order on charge and also refused to sign on the charge sheet after which charges were read out to him. He has no objection for further trial in the case.