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 AK Antony on the occasion of launching of indigenously designed third ship of project 15 (Chennai).