Undertrial in war room leak case to wear bullet-proof jacket

March 20th, 2008 - 4:27 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, March 20 (IANS) In an unprecedented order, a Delhi court Thursday permitted defence middleman Abhishek Verma, accused of leaking secrets from the Navy War Room, to wear a bullet-proof jacket after he complained of threats to his life while being transported from jail to court. Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Sanjeev Jain allowed Verma’s to wear a bullet-proof jacket while being taken from Tihar Jail to a hospital or for court hearings.

Verma, lodged in jail number 4 at Tihar, had complained that underworld don Romesh Sharma had been threatening him and trying to extort money through his lawyer.

“Sharma had demanded Rs.3 crore (Rs.30 million) from Verma. The complaint has now been turned into a first information report and the special staff of Delhi Police has been asked to investigated the matter,” Verma’s lawyer Pramod Dubey told IANS.

Earlier, the court had directed the deputy commissioner of police of Third Battalion, responsible for the security of Tihar jail, to provide a separate van to Verma while being taken to the court.

Verma, along with retired navy officers Ravi Shankaran and Kulbhushan Parashar, is accused of involvement in the alleged leak of sensitive information from the Navy War Room here.

The leaked data allegedly pertained to the Indian Navy’s procurement plans, including its sensitive submarine acquisition programme.

Last year Verma had written a letter saying he was facing death and extortion threats inside the prison.

The letter was addressed to the additional chief metropolitan magistrate, deputy inspector general of Tihar Jail, superintendent of jail number one, lockup in-charge at the Patiala House courts, lockup in-charge at the Tis Hazari courts and the commandant of the Tamil Nadu battalion involved in security at Tihar Jail.

After becoming an approver for the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in another case, he said he started receiving threats from a gang of criminals inside the jail.

Verma alleged that Charanjeet, lodged in jail number eight; Hari Krishan Sharma in jail number five; Shiv Singh in jail number three; and Kishan Solanki in jail number eight had attacked him with water containing some chemicals March 9 while he was being taken back from the Patiala House Court in a van.

Son of former Congress MP Veena Verma, Abhishek had been in Tihar for the last six months.

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