The Maharashtra Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) today arrested an employee of Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) with its Ojhar unit in Nashik for allegedly supplying information on aircrafts including Tejas to his ISI handler, sources in the know told ET.
According to sources, the 41-year old employee of the state-owned aerospace and defence company, was honey trapped into sharing information, “on Indian fighter aircrafts and their sensitive details, along with the information related to HAL, its unit at Ojhar and the prohibited areas inside the manufacturing unit to the ISI,” sources added.
When reached for a comment, HAL spokesperson, Gopal Sutar told ET, “As the interrogation is on we have no comments to offer”.
According to the ATS, its Nashik unit acting on reliable information tracked the arrested the said HAL employee who broke down during sustained interrogation and revealed, “... that he was in constant touch with Inter Services Intelligence (ISI), a Pakistani intelligence agency, and was supplying the secret information about Indian fighter aircrafts and their sensitive details, along with the information related to HAL, the aircraft manufacturing unit at Ojhar, Nashik, the airbase and the prohibited areas inside the manufacturing Unit to the ISI,” the ATS said in a press statement.
An offence has been registered under sections 3, 4 & 5 of the Official Secrets Act, 1923. Three mobile handsets with five SIM cards and two memory cards have been seized from the accused. “The same are being sent to the forensic science laboratory (FSL) for examination.He was produced before a competent court and remanded to ten days of police custody,” the ATS release added.
Other than Tejas, HAL manufactures SU-30 aircrafts. Moreover, the Nashik unit is also engaged in overhauling both MiG 21 and SU-30.