The Rajasthan police have arrested an Indian Army personnel after he was reportedly found passing on important information to the Pakistan-based ISI operatives. The jawan, identified as Somveer Singh from Haryana, is posted in a tank regiment in Jaisalmer.
It is believed that Singh, a part of the Armoured Corps, was honey-trapped by an ISI spy who goes by the name of Anika Chopra on Facebook. He is said to have been in regular touch with her since 2016 and the duo often chatted on social media, where Singh passed on information about his unit and its movement.
Chopra reportedly told Singh that she was a captain in the Medical Corps of the Indian Army and the jawan was thrilled to know that a lady officer had sent him a friend request. Singh, who was newly married in 2016, even made up his mind to divorce his wife and marry Chopra.
"The jawan has been arrested in Jaisalmer by the Rajasthan Police and the Army is providing all possible assistance to the civilian authorities in this investigation," Defence PRO Colonel Sambit Ghosh told ANI.
Singh is said to have sent Chopra several details of his unit including pictures of tanks and timing of field firing in exchange for money, reported News18. As of now, the military intelligence has been able to track down a trail of only Rs 5,000.
"The online conversation between the two graduated into video chatting and sharing of sexual messages," the Times of India quoted an officer of the investigating team as saying. "Later on, the agent must have lured Somveer into revealing strategic information for rewards."
The amount was transferred to his bank account and he is later said to have transferred the money to his e-wallet.
Singh has now been arrested under the Official Secrets Act, 1923, and was produced in court, which has sent him to judicial custody. "The court has granted us custody till [Friday] January 18," Superintendent of police Hari Charan Meena told TOI.
The army is now said to be investigating several other accounts of officials and jawans to check if the spy was in touch with others as well. In addition, about 50 other soldiers have also been questioned on the matter.
The incident comes just a few months after BrahMos engineer Nishant Agarwal was arrested for passing on information to Pakistani intelligence operatives through fake social media accounts. Agarwal worked at missile programme's Nagpur campus and was said to be interacting with two Facebook accounts, which went by the names Neha Sharma and Pooja Ranjan.