M A I N   N E W S

ISI’s mole in MEA held
Tribune News Service

New Delhi/Thimphu, April 27
A woman diplomat posted at the Indian High Commission in Islamabad has been arrested for allegedly passing information to Pakistani intelligence agencies.

Madhuri Gupta, a promotee officer of the Ministry of External Affairs who was posted as Second Secretary at the Indian mission for the last three years, was arrested by Delhi police four days ago on the charge of passing sensitive information to her contacts in Pakistan’s ISI.

“We have reasons to believe that an official at the High Commission of India in Islamabad had been passing information to Pakistan intelligence agencies. The matter is under investigation… The official is cooperating with our investigations and inquiries,’’ MEA spokesman Vishnu Prakash said in Thimphu, declining to share any more information on the plea that it could amount to compromising with national security.

The matter is understood to have been discussed at length by External Affairs Minister SM Krishna with Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao, both of whom are in Thimphu in connection with the SAARC Summit. Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan Sharat Sabharwal is also believed to have been questioned in this connection.

Madhuri had allegedly been passing on sensitive information to her contacts in ISI till her movements came under surveillance. Reports say the station head of Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) in Islamabad, RK Sharma, has also come under scanner for allegedly abusing his position and passing on information to Madhuri.

Fifty three-year-old Madhuri, who is a spinster, was summoned to New Delhi on the pretext of discussions on the SAARC Summit when she was taken into custody.




It was ‘reverse honeytrap’
Ajay Banerjee & Sandeep Yadav
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 27
Madhuri Gupta may have been lured into a ‘friendship’ with an ISI agent — a reverse honeytrap — to pass on information detrimental to Indian interests in Pakistan and Afghanistan. The ISI man has so far been identified as Rana and was meeting her frequently.

The close nature of friendship between Gupta, a 53 year-old spinster posted in the Indian mission at Islamabad and the ISI man had caught the attention of Indian agencies, who had been monitoring her movements since she was posted to Pakistan in 2008, top-level sources here revealed.

Gupta had expressed a keenness to serve in Pakistan indicating that she may be having cross-border links even before her posting. Pakistan is anyway considered a tough posting for anyone. The nature of information accessible to the ISI through her was classified, including some sensitive documents pertaining to Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) agents posted at the Indian High Commission at Islamabad. Also, the diplomatic strategy and list of officials, who were expected to visit Pakistan and Afghanistan, besides other secret government papers may have changed hands, sources added.

The Intelligence Bureau tipped off the Ministry of External Affairs about the activities of Gupta, who was asked to come to Delhi to clarify some matters relating to her SAARC summit assignment.

Within hours of landing in Delhi, she was detained and later arrested under the Officials Secrets Act, 1923.

The phone records of her two mobiles --- one a Pakistan number and the other an Indian number --- are being scanned. The emails are also being scanned could reveal more details.

Suspicion against her deepened when she, possibly, under pressure of her Pakistani friend, showed “extraordinary” interest in areas beyond her role in the information wing of the Indian mission. Some of the matters did not concern her remotely. Security agencies function on a strict need-to-know basis formula and this was like a red flag, said a source.

Gupta, has risen through the ranks and in her three-decade career became an IFS-grade B officer, which is lower than the direct recruited IFS officers. Notably, she has also worked as assistant director with a foreign policy think-tank --- the Indian Council of World Affairs (ICWA) - before her Pakistan posting.

Madhuri Gupta was well versed in Urdu and her services were utilised for translation and interpretation. Earlier, she was posted at the Indian Mission in Kuala Lumpur.





HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |