New Delhi: Diplomat Madhuri Gupta, arrested on charges of spying for Pakistan, joins a list of several top Indian officials accused of leaking sensitive
information or falling into honey trap in the past few decades.
The last such case is that of Navy officer Commodore Sukhjinder Singh, now being probed for his alleged liaison with a Russian woman between 2005 and 2007 -- when he was posted in Russia as the head of Indian team overseeing the refit of aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov.
A board of inquiry, set up against Singh after his objectionable photographs with the unidentified woman surfaced, is now probing whether his "loose moral conduct" and indiscretions have any connections with the Gorshkov deal which has been signed after a lot of negotiations due to the cost hike of the carrier.
In May 2008, a senior Indian Embassy official in Beijing was called back to New Delhi for falling to the charms of a Chinese honey trap. Manmohan Sharma, a senior Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) officer, was alleged to be in a romantic affair with his Chinese language teacher. Indian authorities suspected the woman could be an informant of the Chinese government and gathered information about India's moves and counter-moves on the border talks.
In October 2007, a 1975 batch Research and Analysis Service (RAS) officer Ravi Nair was called back from Hong Kong for his 'friendship' with a girl believed to be working for a Chinese spy agency.
However, within a brief time Nair was again given a foreign posting in Colombo where the woman also came and allegedly started staying with him, raising suspicion.
The officials of other departments, posted at the Indian High Commission, sent reports about Nair to their respective departments paving way for his recall.
Like any other snooping agency, India's external Intelligence agency RAW has also a history of officials switching their loyalties to foreign agencies.
The most infamous case which shook RAW out of reverie was that of Rabinder Singh who became a mole of American intelligence agency CIA and flew to the US despite being under RAW surveillance.
Singh initially worked with the Indian Army and held a very senior position with RAW handling Southeast Asia. By the time the agency sensed his affiliations, Singh escaped to the US through Nepal in 2004.
The second blow came in 2006 with the discovery of another alleged CIA mole in India's National Security Council Secretariat, which is part of the Prime Minister's Office.