The Navy's top brass has been put in a tight spot by the CBI's contention that it has not been able to establish any connection between a naval officer sacked for alleged involvement in the war room leak and other defence officials and businessmen linked to the scandal.
In its status report to the Delhi High Court on its probe against sacked Captain Kashyap Kumar, the CBI said "no connection between him and Kulbushan Parashar (one of the main accused in the case) and other key players in the conspiracy has been established so far during investigation".
"...He (Kumar) was not arrested and chargesheeted so far," the status report said.
The CBI's stand before the court could embarrass the Navy, which dismissed Kumar from service in October last year under the rarely used president's pleasure doctrine without making him face a court-martial.
The CBI has examined and submitted the naval board of inquiry's report to the trial court as part of the evidence.
The Navy, in a sworn affidavit before the High Court, which is hearing a petition filed by Kumar to challenge his dismissal, claimed "the documents on record clearly establish beyond any pale of doubt the involvement (of Kumar) in such a serious act of leakage of official secrets as well as distribution of statutory data of the Indian Navy..."
This affidavit was submitted in March but nine months later, "the pale of doubt" statement from the Navy has found no takers in the CBI, officials investigating the case said.