//CBI arrests 5 in Navy War Room leak case

CBI arrests 5 in Navy War Room leak case

Raids 17 places, including the premises of a relative of Navy chief Admiral Arun Prakash, across the nation
New Delhi:
In a nationwide swoop, the CBI arrested five persons, including three former naval officials, more than a month after the defence ministry asked it to probe the Navy’s War Room leak case.

It raided 17 places in Delhi, Goa, Chandigarh, Mumbai, Muzaffarpur and other places after registering a case against nine people, including Ravi Shankaran, a kin of Navy chief Admiral Arun Prakash, under the Officials Secrets Act.

While three persons — retired navy officer Kulbhushan Parashar, V K Jha and Vinod Rana — were arrested late on Wednesday night and early Thursday morning, two more suspects — Mukesh Bajaj and Raj Rani Jaiswal — were arrested from Pune on Thursday afternoon.

Parashar was arrested from Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi upon his arrival from London, Rana was nabbed from Dwarka in southwest Delhi and Jha was arrested from Muzaffarpur in Bihar. Parashar and Rana were produced before Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Seema Maini at her residence, who remanded them to 14 days CBI custody. Jha would be brought to Delhi.

CBI sources said Shankaran, a retired Navy officer who is now in London, has been asked to join the probe failing which the investigating agency would take appropriate action, which include revoking his passport and deportation.

THE WAR ROOM LEAK CASE

The Navy constituted a board of inquiry after intelligence officers recovered a pen drive from Wing Commander S L Surve (of the IAF) in 2005, which reportedly contained classified naval information.

After a two-month inquiry, the board found three senior officers — captain Kashyap Kumar (former director of Naval Operations), commander V Rana and commander V K Jha (chief of security, war room) — guilty and dismissed them from service.

The government then referred the case to the CBI following reports that the leaks pertained to a high-profile defence deal.

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