IAF officer espionage case:There were reasons for action, says Sitharaman

An IAF officer was taken into custody on the basis of surveillance and the action was not taken in a hurry, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said today.

A Group Captain, posted at the IAF’s headquarters here, was taken into custody by the force for alleged involvement in espionage and possible attempt to access sensitive documents.

Sitharaman has already been briefed about the action against the officer, officials said.

There were enough reasons to detain him, the defence minister told reporters when asked about the issue.

The investigators are probing whether the officer was a victim of honey trap, sources said yesterday.

The officer was indulging in certain “unwanted activities” through unauthorised electronic devices which is against existing orders, they said.

Apparently, he was in touch with a woman through social media whose identity has not yet been established.

A team of the IAF’s central security and investigation took the officer into custody, and he is being interrogated, said the sources.

The “unwanted” activities by the officer were discovered during routine counter intelligence surveillance, the sources said, adding he attempted to posses sensitive documents.

The IAF officially did not comment on the matter.

The identity of the officer has been kept secret as investigation into the case is going on, the sources said.

The investigators are also examining whether the officer has passed on any sensitive information to anyone. PTI