This particular decision is held by the High Court Of Karnataka through the single bench of Justice K Natrajan in the case of Jeetendar Singh v. State of Karnataka.
The petitioner contended that he is innocent and has been falsely implicated. He claimed to have come in contact with a lady through social media and started chatting with her. In order to get her love and affection, the petitioner wore the Indian Military uniform and used to chat with Pooja who is from Pakistan. Except for using uniform and sharing some photographs, there is no incriminating material against the petitioner to show he has sent any information to the Pakistani.
The case of the prosecution is that on the complaint filed by one Police Inspector Shivaprasad of CCB Police on19.09.2021 alleging that the petitioner said to be projected himself as Army man and in conspiracy with the accused No.2 and accused No.3 who belongs to Pakistan, he has provided the information to the accused No.2 through Whatsapp and other social media by taking photographs of the important places like Naval Base Army area and other important places to Pakistan ISI people who is at Karachi, Pakistan.
Based upon this information, the police arrested the petitioner on 19.11.2021 and he was remanded to judicial custody.
It was also contended that there were two cell phones used by the petitioner/accused, out of which, one cell phone was recovered by the police and another cell phone was already destroyed by the petitioner and they were unable to retrieve the information sent by the petitioner. The offence is a very serious one. The petitioner not only gave information about Army details, base camps, pokhran etc. to the lady who is an ISI agent of Pakistan. If the petitioner is released on bail, he may commit a similar offence or abscond from the case is not ruled out.
Order and judgements
It is clear that the petitioner was sharing information with Pakistani Intelligence Operating from Bengaluru, which reveals that there is prima facie material to show that this petitioner was supplying the information to Pakistani Intelligence Operator. Therefore, it cannot be said that the petitioner was just playing or chatting with a Pakistani woman as he has sent various official secrets like Military, Naval base and other important places.“
Further it said, “Section 3 of the Official Secrets Act, 1923 prescribes that punishment may be extended to 14 years imprisonment and in other cases to three years. The provisions of Section 3(c) of the Official Secrets Act, 1923 is attracted against this petitioner as he has collected and communicated the information to a Pakistani which is likely to affect sovereignty and integrity of India.”
It added, “As per Section 13(3) of the Official Secrets Act, 1923, no Court shall take cognizance of any offence under this Act unless upon complaint made by order of, or under authority from, the. Appropriate Government or some officer empowered by the Appropriate Government on this behalf.”If the bail is granted to the petitioner, there is every possibility of petitioner absconding from the case and delaying the process are not ruled out. Even otherwise, there will be a threat to the life of the petitioner, if he comes out of the jail. Therefore, in order to safeguard the interest of the petitioner as well as the safety and security of the nation, it is not a fit case for granting bail to the petitioner/accused.”
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Judgement reviewed by- Mohammed Shoaib