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Sunday, April 14, 2024

Indian defence engineer leaks nuclear missile data to female Pakistani spy

29-year-old Dukka Mallikarjuna Reddy befriended a woman on Facebook named "Natasha Rao" who told him that her father served in the Indian Air Force. The two eventually "fell in love", with the woman proposing to Reddy.

In another case of honeytrap, an Indian engineer allegedly leaked classified information on India’s missile program after he was lured into marriage by an alleged ‘Pakistani spy’, Indian media reported.

Indian authorities arrested 29-year-old Dukka Mallikarjuna Reddy on charges of leaking sensitive information on India’s missile development programs to a suspected Pakistani spy, who posed as a woman working with a UK-based defense journal.

According to the details, Reddy, an employee of the Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL), was at the time working on an advanced naval system program. Due to his job nature, the Indian engineer had access to defense manufacturing units – to inspect work progress – as well as the specialized components used in the missile development.

Read more: Trump will never agree but Russia still uses honey traps for spying

He met a woman on Facebook named “Natasha Rao” who told him that her father served in the Indian Air Force (IAF). The two eventually “fell in love”, with the woman proposing to Reddy and asking for the aforesaid details. Reddy reportedly shared classified pictures and documents regarding the missile development programs. This continued for two years after which Natasha Rao changed her name to Simran Chopra.

As per Indian media reports, the police charged Reddy under Section 409 (criminal breach of trust) of the Indian Penal Code and various sections of the Official Secrets Act, 1923. The police also suspect that Natasha Rao aka Simran Chopra is an Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agent.

Not the first time

This is not the first time that an Indian man has been honey-trapped. Back in May, Indian police arrested Pradeep Kumar, an army officer, for sharing images of confidential strategic and military documents with a woman who was allegedly a Pakistani spy.

Prior to that, another officer of the Indian Air Force named Devendra Sharma was held by Crime Branch Delhi Police after he leaked sensitive information regarding the IAF’s radar system to an alleged spy of ISI.

Read more: Indian Army officer leaks information to alleged female ISI spy

In 2018, an IAF officer was apprehended in Delhi on charges of espionage and leaking classified information. Group Captain Arun Marwaha, 51, was caught leaking documents to two agents who chatted with him pretending to be women.

Pertinent to mention, India has often come under fire for its nuclear security being breached on multiple occasions.