A resident of Govandi was convicted under the Official Secrets Act, 1923, by the sessions court on Tuesday.
Mohammed Afghani, 33, was sentenced to five years of rigorous imprisonment on charges of possessing sensitive documents purportedly to hand over to Pakistan’s intelligence agency ISI.
Afghani, who claimed to be a zari worker, was found guilty under section 3(1)(c) of the act that deals with possession of classified documents. “Afghani was arrested on October 11, 2007, after he was found in possession of incriminating documents that included the promotion policy of Indian Air Force, a 2001 directory of Indian Navy and a CD containing 42 photographs of various Indian warships,” said special public prosecutor Kalpana Chavan.
“The photographs were of places that have been notified as ‘prohibited’ under the Official Secrets Act. They were taken from different angles, which increased our suspicion,” said Chavan.
In the charge sheet the police said Afghani had confessed that he was in touch with an ISI officer ‘Sayyed’ who had told him to conduct a recce of the Indian warships.“He claimed before the court that he had gone to Pakistan to meet his relatives. However, he was unable to tell us who these relatives were,” said Chavan.
The police had also recovered debit and credit cards of Citibank, Bangkok Bank, Alafal Bank and Standard Chartered Bank from him.
However, investigations revealed that Afghani did not have accounts with Bangkok Bank and Alafal Bank, and the cards were not his own.
Afghani broke down outside the court after the judgment and claimed that there was no evidence against him.
Defence advocate RB Mokashi said he would file an appeal.