Corporate espionage: Saikia cries foul, says it's a Rs 10,000-cr scam

  • Karn Pratap Singh, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Feb 21, 2015 16:22 IST

Former journalist Santanu Saikia, arrested for allegedly receiving classified documents stolen from the petroleum ministry, claimed on Saturday that he was framed as he had been working to uncover a Rs 10,000 crore scam.

As Saikia was brought back to the Crime Branch office in Chanakyapuri following a mandatory medical check-up at RML Hospital on Saturday afternoon, he shouted to journalists waiting in the area that the charges against him were fabricated.

Before policemen bustled him into the Crime Branch office, Saikia claimed a “false case” was fabricated against him as he was part of a secret operation to unravel a “Rs 10,000 crore scam within the petroleum ministry”.

Without giving details, he claimed his arrest was an attempt to cover up the alleged scam in the petroleum ministry.

Officials could not be reached for a response to Saikia’s allegations.

The former journalist, who ran a portal that provided information on the oil and gas industry, is among 12 people arrested so far in connection with the leak of secret documents from the petroleum, coal and power ministries.

Police said on Friday that an input for the Finance Minister’s Budget speech and several key policy documents were among the documents recovered from the arrested people, including former and serving multitasking staff of the oil ministry.

Police sources said officials were minutely examining two diaries seized from Saikia and Prayas Jain, a Melbourne-based energy consultant who has also been arrested on charges of receiving classified information.

The diaries contained details regarding “illegal business” transactions of Saikia and Jain, the sources alleged. They also contained details of their clients, the sources added.

Four top executives of leading energy companies were arrested on the basis of information contained in the diaries and raids are being conducted on the offices of these firms, the sources said.

The sources further said the names of some more companies had emerged in the course of the investigation and police are examining their roles.

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