On Thursday, a ‘Honey-trapped’ Army jawan was arrested in for allegedly leaking classified information on Facebook. The jawan, who was with 5 Kumaon regiment, was identified as one Ravinder. He had allegedly shared sensitive information to a foreign woman over Facebook. He was sent to police custody on Friday.
Haryana:Army jawan Ravinder arrested in Narnaul on charges of leaking confidential info on national security.ASP Vinod Kumar says,“While chatting with a girl on Facebook,he shared pics of weapons used by Army.She gave him some money. Probe on. He’s taken into 2-day remand”(12.07) pic.twitter.com/nbeU0S1lFW
— ANI (@ANI) July 13, 2019
Ravinder had shared information pertaining to the rifles used by the Indian Army and also the location of his unit. “The preliminary investigations indicate that the woman who allegedly honey-trapped the Army sepoy belongs to Pakistan, though it is yet to be verified. We are interrogating the arrested person and seeking help of cyber experts to get to the bottom of the matter”, said Narnaul SP Chander Mohan.
Ravinder had joined his regiment in 2017 and in 2018 was posted in Amritsar. It is then when he had come in contact with a woman over Facebook. They began texting and video calling regularly. They had also exchanged phone numbers and started to talk over WhatsApp. He soon revealed that he worked for the Indian Army. He began sharing sensitive information and was also allegedly paid to do so.
“He disclosed the kind of rifles used by the Army personnel. When Ravinder moved to Arunachal Pradesh with his unit, he disclosed this to the woman. In December 2018, the woman got Rs 5,000 deposited in Ravinder’s account. He continued to reveal confidential information pertaining to internal and external national security and sensitive locations”, said the police.
Reportedly, the Intelligence Bureau (IB) was tracking his movements for a long time. The information was passed on to the Narnaul police. After receiving strong inputs, he was arrested from near the Narnaul railway station. A case was registered against him under Sections 3, 4, 5 and 9 of the official secrets act.
The police have retrieved data from two mobile phones and three SIM cards recovered from Ravinder. They are now trying to ascertain the details of the woman who had contacted him. Ravinder has been sent to police custody on Friday.
This isn’t the first time that Army jawans were arrested for similar charges. ‘Honey Trapping’ is a commonly used technique practised for very long by spy agencies to extract sensitive information. According to reports, 13 serving and retired defence personnel had been arrested for allegedly spying for the ISI or being part of its espionage racket in recent years.
Last month, the Army intelligence has issued an advisory to army personnel against an Instagram profile ‘Oyesomya’ who is suspected of being an enemy spy trying to target army officers and special forces’ troops.
In another case, Rajasthan Police had arrested one Army jawan on charges of espionage in Jaiselmer. After interrogations, it was revealed that he was in touch with the Pakistani ISI operatives through social media.
In December, the Intelligence Bureau had said that Chinese and Pakistani girls being used by ISI to ‘honey trap’ Indian officials. Last year, an engineer working at the Brahmos Aerospace facility was also booked for alleged leaking of information to suspected individials via social media.