During his joint interrogation by Delhi Police and intelligence agencies, expelled Pakistani High Commission staffer Mehmood Akhtar had claimed that 16 other employees of the diplomatic mission were in touch with spies for extracting sensitive information and documents pertaining to army and BSF deployment, said a senior police officer privy to the probe.

His claims are still being verified and, if found to be true, the police might write to the Ministry of External Affairs to take the matter forward, the officer said.

Crime Branch On Hunt To Nab Remaining Pakistani Spies

Crime Branch teams are raiding various places in Rajasthan to apprehend the locals who were providing confidential documents and information to Akhtar, who allegedly headed the espionage racket.

Two teams of Crime Branch are currently in Rajasthan along with the other arrested accused-- Maulana Ramzan, Subhash Jangir and Shoaib-- to seek details of paramilitary personnel who might be involved in leaking information to them, sources said. Two persons have also been detained in Rajasthan and are currently being questioned, said the officer.

"It is suspected that some retired officers were in touch with the arrested spies," he said. Samajwadi Party's Rajya Sabha MP Munavvar Saleem's personal assistant Farhat Khan was also arrested last week in connection with the espionage racket.

Pakistan High Commission Staffer Caught Receiving Secret Documents

The Pakistan High Commission staffer was caught receiving secret documents here on October 26. Ramzan and Jangir, residents of Nagaur, Rajasthan, were held along with Akhtar. Another accused Shoaib was detained in Jodhpur and brought to Delhi by the police where he was arrested.

Staffer was detained after he was found in possession of defence documents while two others were arrested on espionage charges.

On intelligence inputs, Delhi Police Crime Branch took the staffer identified as Mohammed Akhtar in custody. He was released after questioning as he enjoys diplomatic immunity, they said.

Pakistan Envoy Abdul Basit protests over the detention of the Pakistan High Commisssion employees alleging them of stealing defence documents. Delhi Joint Commissioner of Police addressed the media Thursday morning and informed about the busting of Pakistan spy racket. He told media that suspects were used to meet at Delhi Zoo for sharing crucial documents.

He added that during initial interrogation, Pakistan Envoy staff member claimed to be an Indian citizen and also showed his 'forged' Aadhar card.  Suspected espionage activities were carried out since last one-and-half year, but Delhi Police came to know about it six months back and since then were keeping an eye on the suspects.

After this expose, more Pakistan High Commission staffers are under the scanner. The government has also directed Mohammed Akhtar to leave the country immediately after he was released due to diplomacy immunity.

Abdul Basit Lodges Protest Over Detention Of Pakistan HC Staffers

Abdul Basit Registers Protest Over Detention Of Pakistan HC Staffers

In the meantime, Pakistan Envoy to India Abdul Basit has lodged a strong protest over the detention of the Pakistan High Commission employees saying that the detention of the commission staff is in contravention of the Vienna Convention. "Protested with Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar at detention & manhandling of Pakistan HC staffer yesterday in violation of 1961Vienna Convention," said Adbul Basit. Basit also asked the Indian government to ensure that such harassments should not happen in future. In a denial mode, Abdul Basit dubs Indian government accusations as false, saying Pakistan high Commission never engage itself in activities that are incompatible with its diplomatic status.

India-Pakistan Relation Growing Bitter As Heavy Firing At LoC Continue
The incessant and unprovoked firing by Pakistani troops along the Line of Control and International Border in Jammu and Kashmir on has claimed lives of at least eight people, while 22 have been injured, mostly women and children. This is the highest number of civilian deaths on the border in a single day in a span of over 20 years. Pakistan has extended the indiscriminate firing that started in Jerda to Pindi and Nai Basti areas in Ramgarh sector. "The BSF is retaliating effectively and heavy shelling and firing exchanges are going on," an official said.

Indian forces have retaliated killing 2 Pakistani soldiers and destroying 14 posts. The BSF said that it has destroyed 14 posts of Pakistani Rangers in retaliatory action in Ramgarh and Arnia sectors of Jammu region.