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Scorpene leak viewed ‘very seriously’ but not a matter of much worry: Navy chief

india Updated: Aug 29, 2016 13:41 IST
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File photo of Indian Navy's Scorpene submarine INS Kalvari being escorted by tugboats as it arrives at Mazagon Docks Ltd, a naval vessel ship building yard, in Mumbai.(Reuters)

The leak of information related to Scorpene submarine is being viewed “very seriously” but it is “not a matter of much worry”, navy chief Admiral Sunil Lanba said on Monday, in his first comments after over 22,000 pages of data detailing the vessel’s capabilities became public.

The government and the Indian Navy have maintained the leaked data will not compromise the boat’s stealth capabilities. Defence minister Manohar Parrikar said last week that the information did not contain data on the weapon systems.

The Australian reported the leak on its website, and French defence firm DCNS approached the Supreme Court in Australia to stop the newspaper from publishing the leaked documents. India has asked France and DCNS to probe the leak.

“Any leak of information is viewed very seriously. We have viewed the leak of Scorpene data very seriously and we have asked (French firm) DCNS to launch an urgent investigation into this,” the navy chief said in New Delhi.

He noted that the defence ministry has set up a high-level committee to investigate the matter.

“Based on the report of the committee, we will see what mitigation measures need to be taken,” he said.

Asked how serious a concern the leak was, the navy chief said, “This is not a matter of much worry. The committee is analysing and they will see what data has been compromised and what mitigation steps have to be taken.”

The high-level committee is expected to submit a detailed report to Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar by September 20.

Over 22,000 pages of top secret data on the capabilities of six highly advanced submarines being built for the navy in Mumbai in collaboration with French company DCNS have been leaked.