Police Case Against Sanjay Bhandari
The Delhi Police have registered a case on Sunday against controversial arms dealer and defence consultant Sanjay Bhandari in connection with the recovery of confidential documents of the Ministry of Defence from his house in South Delhi’s Defence Colony. The case has been registered under sections 3 and 5 of the Official Secrets Act (OSA) on a complaint by Colonel Puneet Ahuja, a senior Defence Ministry official, based on the documents and copies of classified papers recovered from his house during a raid by Income Tax department in April. The FIR also names Ashok Shankar, a close associate of Bhandari. Both are being probed by the Enforcement Directorate and income tax department over evasion of taxes.
The raid procured information, including those related to a much-delayed proposal to buy mid-air refuelling aircraft for the Indian Air Force and the proposals placed before the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC). The raid also found copies of minutes of the meeting chaired by the then defence minister regarding some other procurements. Officials have said that a probe will be carried out to find out how Bhandari received the documents related to the policy planning and force development branches of the ministry, the contents of which can be accessed only by senior officials, reported Times Of India.
Bhandari is already under the scanner of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and Income-Tax (I-T) Department for allegedly holding a ‘benami’ property in London. The IT Department had been carrying out an investigation against Bhandari and the OIS Group in connection with a tax evasion case.
After the recovery of documents, the IT department had informed the matter to defence ministry which directed CBI to conduct an inquiry, but later, instructions were given to Delhi Police to register an FIR. Bhandari and Shankar are expected to be called to join the investigation and record their statements after which the future course of action would be decided.
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