NEW DELHI: Taking cognizance of The Sunday Standard report, which highlighted last month that a huge number of contractual employees in the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) were posing a threat to the national defence secrets following a few espionage cases, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has sought a detailed report from the premier agency.
The April 26 news report ‘National Security at Stake in Defence Research’ had said that DRDO had a strength of more than 50,000 temporary or casual employees who had complete access to all its classified and research activities.
Alarmed over the issue raised by this paper, Defence Secretary R K Mathur, who is holding additional charge of the DRDO, has sought a detailed report through an internal note issued on May 8 to Director Generals of all the DRDO establishments.
“It is therefore requested that requisite inputs in respect of all hired/contractual employees in your cluster/laboratories and departments along with duration of employment, payment details, functional justification and copy of the relevant authority letter be furnished to the department by June 5 for further necessary action,” Major General Ajay Gupta, Director Vigilance and Security, said in the internal missive on the directions of the Defence Secretary.
These contractual employees are not only involved in every step of design and development of projects but also in trials.