The direction came during arguments on the bail pleas of five corporate executives, who along with others, were arrested in connection with the case, with the court asking the police as to how it has arrested the accused without ascertaining whether the documents were classified or not.

During the hearing, an Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) of Crime Branch told the court that they were yet to receive a report from the Ministry on its query whether the documents allegedly leaked were classified or confidential.

"It is directed that the report (of MoPNG) be submitted in three days. Put up for further hearing on April 10," Additional Sessions Judge Raj Kapoor cited.

The court also asked the investigating officer (IO) to show the letter they had written to the MoPNG for evaluation and analysis to specify whether the documents allegedly leaked were confidential and classified or were routine papers.

Responding to this, the IO said "the documents recovered from the accused are being verified as of now and the ministry is analysing and evaluating the documents, but crime branch have not yet received any reply from them."

Not satisfied with the IO's reply, the judge said, "You have not charged the accused under the Official Secrets Act (OSA) till now. Then how have you arrested them without even ascertaining that the documents were classified?"

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