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Former Diplomat Madhuri Gupta Gets 3 Years In Jail For Leaking Info To Pakistan's ISI

DIVYIA ASTHANA | 0
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| May 20 , 2018 , 09:10 IST

Former Indian diplomat Madhuri Gupta who served at the Indian High Commission in Pakistan's Islamabad was sentenced to 3 years in jail on Saturday for passing on sensitive information to the premier intelligence agency of Pakistan, the ISI.

Additional sessions judge Sidharth Sharma gave Gupta the maximum sentence for offences of spying and wrongful communication of information protected under the law, stating that her actions caused a "severe security threat". The judge observed that an educated woman like her did not deserve any leniency. She had sought leniency on the grounds that she was a single woman, a senior citizen and "victim of circumstances".

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A Delhi court had convicted Madhuri Gupta on Friday for passing secret information to Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) during her Islamabad posting in 2010, the conviction coming 8 years after Gupta was arrested by the Delhi Police's special cell.

The bench of Additional Sessions Judge Sidharth Sharma held Gupta (61) guilty under various provisions of the Official Secrets Act (OSA), including spying and wrongful communication of classified information.

However, Gupta was acquitted from the stringent provisions of the OSA which called for a maximum imprisonment of 14 years as the prosecution could not prove the allegations.

“No document was passed over by her to her handlers. To my mind, e-mail is not helpful to the prosecution to establish a case against the accused attracting 14 years of imprisonment,” the court said in its 40-page order.

Gupta was convicted under Section 3(1)(c) and section 5 (wrongful communication of information) of OSA, read with 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC.

The ex-diplomat Gupta had been arrested in April 2010 on charges of revealing classified information to Pakistani officials Mubshar Raza Rana and Jamshed via email using her phone. Gupta claimed that she was falsely implicated by officials of India’s High Commission in Islamabad and the MEA with which she claimed to have 'strained relations'.

After the sentencing, Gupta was granted bail and allowed to appeal.