Parole for accused in Naval War Room leak case

July 10th, 2008 - 8:43 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, July 10 (IANS) A court here Thursday released on parole retired Indian Air Force (IAF) Wing Commander S.L. Surve, one of the five accused in a case relating to the leak of classified information from the Naval War Room here, to enable him attend a relative’s last rites in Nagpur. Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Sanjeev Jain allowed Surve’s plea after he approached the court for allowing him to attend rituals to be conducted after his father-in-law’s death.

The court also directed the Delhi Police to look after his security.

Besides Surve, the other accused are Ravi Shankaran, a relative of former Indian Navy chief Admiral Arun Prakash, retired naval Commander Kulbushan Parashar and sacked naval Commanders Vijender Rana and V.K. Jha. An Interpol Red Corner look-out notice has been issued against Shankaran, who has been declared a proclaimed offender.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has already filed a charge sheet against the five sacked officers.

According to the CBI, the accused had leaked out 7,000 pages of classified defence information that had a direct bearing on national security.

The case was registered by CBI March 20, 2006 on a reference from the defence ministry and after scrutiny of inquiry held by the IAF against Surve and the Board of Inquiry conducted by the Indian Navy, Parashar was arrested April 5 on his return from London. Nationwide searches were then carried out at 20 places.

The CBI claimed in its 250-page charge sheet that the accused officials allegedly entered into a criminal conspiracy for obtaining and collecting information related to defence matters that was calculated to be or might be or was intended to be useful to the enemy or which related to a matter the disclosure of which, to unauthorised persons, was prejudicial to the sovereignty and integrity of India and the security of the state.

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