In an indication of the suspected deep inroads arms agents have made into the military establishment,new documents have come to light suggesting that details of some of the most sensitive Army procurements were allegedly leaked and shared with international armament companies by arms agent Abhishek Verma.
A fresh set of documents received last week by the defence ministry and the CBI,on Vermas dealings and his connections with small arms manufacturer Sig Sauer,contain a detailed fact-sheet prepared on February 28,2011 for the then Army Chief Gen V K Singh,detailing 45 most-sensitive capital procurement cases,along with the progress in each of them.
The top-secret document,described as genuine by officials and other sources in the military establishment,gives precise details of the name,purpose,quantity and progress of the Armys most critical procurement projects.
The document was apparently leaked from Army HQ within weeks of being prepared and was allegedly mailed by Vermas associate to his then US-based escrow fund manager C Edmonds Allen.
The confidential document was sent in an email dated April 19,2011,allegedly to be shown to international armament companies to highlight Vermas clout in the military establishment.
While The Indian Express has decided not to publish the contents of the document,officials said the details that have been leaked,specifically the exact quantity of critical ammunition the Army is short of,can have serious implications for national security.
The document also discusses in detail the required quantity of launchers and missiles,along with the project-update for the Armys next generation anti-tank guided missiles,the Armys requirement for 3-D radars,description of the Armys tactical and mobile communication systems,required quantities and updates of the four main personal infantry weapons projects and the total requirement of ammunition for various branches of the Army.
The CBI,which has confirmed that it has received the new set of documents,will probe allegations that the secret contents were shared with at least two companies Sig Sauer and Rhienmetall AD on Vermas instructions.
Reached for its comment,the Army said it is studying the contents of the document. Besides the capital procurement document,other material,including details of the Armys sniper rifle contract for which Sig Sauer was competing,has also been received by the CBI and the defence ministry.