The Crime Branch of Delhi Police busted an espionage racket supported by Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence on Monday.
A handler of Pakistan's Intelligence Operative and one Border Security Force head constable were arrested and the latter, named Abdul Rasheed, was remanded to police custody till December 7.
According to the police, the handler of Pakistan's Intelligence Operative -- 44-year-old Kafaitullah Khan, alias Master Raja from Jammu and Kashmir's Rajouri district -- used the contacts of different security agencies to procure secret and confidential information detrimental to the security of the country.
Meanwhile, Rasheed, who was posted as a head constable at BSF headquarters, intelligence wing at Jammu, was produced before Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Sanjay Khangwal by the crime branch of Delhi Police which sought his custodial interrogation for unearthing the entire conspiracy.
Seeking seven days police custody of Rasheed, the police alleged that he was involved in spying activities and several incriminating documents have been recovered from his house.
The police said he was required to be taken to various places in Jammu and Kashmir, including Rajouri district, and questioned for identification of his associates.
"Rasheed was working at the intelligence unit of the BSF headquarters in Jammu where each and every document was secret in nature and he was supplying the documents to his associates," police said.
At this juncture, the judge asked the police, "Is there any involvement of any senior officers?"
Responding to the court's query, the police said, "Not yet. We are doing the probe. He (Rasheed) is required to be interrogated for ascertaining the money trail as well and the payments made to him for supply of documents."
The court also said that the matter pertains to national security. As soon as the proceedings commenced, the judge asked Rasheed to take the cover off his face.
Besides Rasheed, Kafaitullah was intercepted and arrested in connection with the case at New Delhi railway station while he was on way from Jammu to Bhopal on November 26.
"Secret input was received about the ongoing anti-national activities sponsored by Pakistan Intelligence Operative, which has a network spread over the civilian handlers and the security forces personnel. We are looking into the gravity of the matter. The information was developed and a few persons involved in the network were identified. Both of them have been arrested under the provisions of Official Secret Act," joint commissioner of police (crime) Ravindra Yadav said.
"On November 26, one of the handlers Kafaitullah Khan had boarded a train from Jammu for Bhopal. He was apprehended at the railway station and from his search few documents having implication on national security were recovered. He was arrested under appropriate sections. Further investigations are on," he added.
The arrests come after a Special Task Force arrested another Pakistani spy from Meerut Cantonment area with sensitive documents related to the Indian Army. Mohammand Eizaz alias Mohammad Kalam, a resident of Taramadi Chowk, Irfanabad, Islamabad, Pakistan, was arrested by the STF team with documents related to the Indian Army, Pakistani identity proof, fake voter identity of West Bengal, fake Aadhar card in address of Bareilly district, Delhi Metro card, laptop, pen drives.
Three others who were arrested in Kolkata on Sunday in the case were: Irshad Ansari, 51, a contract labourer with Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Limited; his son Asfaq Ansari, 23 and a relative Mohammed Jahangir.
According to crime branch, Kafaitullah was a handler of Pakistan Intelligence Operative and Rasheed was one of his chief sources and the espionage racket run by them was supported by Pakistan’s ISI.
Information was largely passed through e-mail, Whatsapp and Viber networks with Kafaitullah being given specific tasks mainly concerned with the deployment of security forces and Air Force Operations, a police official said.
The police has said Kafaitullah had boarded a train from Jammu and was going to Bhopal to allegedly recruit more people in the espionage racket.
“In 2013, he visited Pakistan and came into contact with ISI agent there. He agreed to share with them secret information of the defence forces in exchange of money,” the police has said, adding that Kafaitullah soon started cultivating sources in the Indian Army and the BSF, and some of them allegedly started passing him secret documents.
Rasheed was his relative and Khan soon roped him into the network, luring him with a share of the commission he received from alleged ISI agents in Pakistan, it has said.
Pak High Commission employee under scanner
A Pakistan High Commission employee is also under the scanner of Delhi Police probing the espionage racket. Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Ravindra Yadav said the person in Pakistan High Commission whom the ISI operative referred to is yet to be identified but sources said it appeared he was not in the rank of a diplomat.