Charge sheet filed against DRDO scientist accused of providing info to Pakistani agent

Judge Navandar heard both sides' arguments and said he will pass an order on July 7.

Pune: The Anti-Terrorism Squad of Maharashtra Police on Friday filed a charge sheet against Defence Research and Development Organisation scientist Pradeep Kurulkar who is accused of providing confidential information to a Pakistani Intelligence Operative (PIO).

His lawyer, meanwhile, opposed the prosecution’s plea for permission to subject him to certain tests including the layered voice analysis.

The charge sheet, running into more than 1,000 pages, contains changes under sections 3 (penalties for spying), 4 (communication with foreign agent) and 5 (wrongful communication) of the Official Secrets Act, public prosecutor Vijay Fargade told PTI.

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It states that Kurulkar passed sensitive information to a Pakistani agent operating under the name Zara Dasgupta’, he said. The charge sheet was filed before Additional Sessions Judge S R Navandar. Earlier, the defence opposed the ATS’ plea seeking the court’s permission to subject Kurulkar tolayered voice’ and psychological analysis, arguing that these examinations were not necessary.

Kurulkar, then director of a DRDO-affiliated laboratory in Pune, was arrested on May 3.

The anti-terror agency has also sought the DRDO scientist’s consent to face a polygraph test.

“We argued that these tests are not necessary because the prosecution case is about alleged communication through a mobile phone,” said Rhishikesh Ganu, the defence lawyer.

Ganu also argued that compelling the accused to undergo these tests would violate his fundamental rights guaranteed under the Constitution.

Prosecutor Fargade countered the argument and said undergoing these scientific tests in no way violates the fundamental rights.

“Layered voice analysis (LVA) test is conducted just to understand whether the subject is speaking the truth or lying by analysing speech vibrations while responding to questions so that the further course of investigation can be decided,” submitted Fargade.

Judge Navandar heard both sides’ arguments and said he will pass an order on July 7.

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