Pakistani Diplomats: 3 Pakistan mission staff members caught spying, 2 of them expelled | India News
The men, Abid Hussain, Tahir Khan and Javed Hussain, have been found to be directly linked to the ISI. The two men were declared persona non grata by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and asked to leave the country on Monday morning. The last time a member of the Pakistani diplomatic staff was expelled was in 2016.
“The government declared these two officials as persona non grata for engaging in activities incompatible with their membership in a diplomatic mission and asked them to leave the country within 24 hours,” the MEA said in a statement.
India also registered a strong protest with the Pakistani affairs charges regarding the activities of these officials against Indian national security. He was asked to ensure that no member of his diplomatic mission allowed himself to engage in activities hostile to India or to behave in a manner inconsistent with his diplomatic status.
A FIR has been registered under the sections of the Official Secrets Act.
Pakistan dismissed the espionage charge against its mission employees as “false” and “baseless” and dismissed his expulsion as a violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations. Amid the strong likelihood of an eye-for-an-eye response, the Foreign Ministry in Islamabad alleged that its staff was tortured and accused India of trying to restrict space for Pakistani diplomats.
He also said the action was a ploy to divert attention from the “worsening situation and human rights violations” at J&K and the problems, external and internal, facing the BJP government. He also sought the intervention of the international community to guarantee peace and stability in South Asia.
Sources in Delhi said the police tracked down the three Pakistanis when they allegedly went to meet “defense personnel” near Arya Samaj Road in Karol Bagh to exchange highly confidential information.
Abid Hussain (42) and Tahir Khan (44) were found to be using false Indian names and identity cards. They had traveled through the city in a car that Javed Hussain was driving.
Sources said they were under the intelligence scanner for quite some time after they tried to contact and lure some defense personnel to espionage-related activities.
They were caught with some incriminating documents along with Rs 15,000 and two iPhones, one that they wanted to give to the informant.
During the interrogation, the men claimed that they were under diplomatic immunity, but it was not discovered that they were. They claimed to be in contact with several people who provided them with confidential information about military deployments.
Efforts are being made to locate informants as well. Agencies are investigating whether other members of the high commission staff were also involved in the espionage scam.
A report on the interrogation was sent to the MEA. After registering an FIR, the men were sent for a medical examination and then turned over to the high commission.
Sources said Abid Hussain was sent as a visa assistant since December 2018, while Tahir Khan was an employee of the upper division who arrived in India at around the same time. Javed Hussain has been working as a driver for the past five and a half years.
In 2016, Delhi police detained another group of spies comprising more than a dozen Pakistan high commission officials after they caught a staff member, Mehmood Akhtar, who was retrieving data on BSF deployments from along the Indo-Pak border. Following this, 16 high commission staff members were expelled after it was discovered that they were obtaining information from different sources. After that, ISI had been using its published agents in Pakistan missions in neighboring Mauritius and Sri Lanka to organize espionage and subversion in India, the sources said.