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CENTRE: Documents Filed By The Petitioners Seeking Review Of Its Rafale Deal Verdict Will Put ‘National Security In Jeopardy’

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| March 13 , 2019 , 19:09 IST

The center filed an affidavit in the Supreme Court and stated that the documents filed by the petitioners seeking review of its Rafale deal verdict will put “national security in jeopardy” on Wednesday.

In an affidavit filed in the apex court, the government said the review plea filed by former Union ministers Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie as also activist advocate Prashant Bhushan has been widely circulated and is available to the country's enemy and adversaries.

The Affidavit said: "This puts the national security in jeopardy. Without consent, permission or acquiescence of the Central Government, those who have conspired in making the photocopy of these sensitive documents and annexing it to the review petition/ miscellaneous application and thereby committing theft by unauthorized photocopying of such documents have adversely affected the sovereignty, security and friendly relations with the foreign countries."

It said even though the Centre "maintains secrecy", the review petitioners are "guilty of leakage of sensitive information, which offends the terms of the agreements".

"The petitioners are using unauthorisedly accessed documents with the intention to present a selective and incomplete picture of internal secret deliberations on a matter relating to National Security and Defence," the affidavit said.

Whereas, Defence Secretary Sanjay Mitra told the top court that the petitioners had attached documents relating to war capacity of India’s combat jets. “This information is now available to our adversaries. This puts the national security in jeopardy,” the top defense ministry official said.

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The government also told a bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi that an internal inquiry into the leaks had started.

The petitioners are guilty of leakage of sensitive information, which offends the terms of the agreements for the purchase of the fighter jets, the government said. Additionally, those who have conspired in this leakage are guilty of penal offenses under the Indian Penal Code including theft by unauthorized photocopying and leakage of sensitive official documents affecting national security.