Bengaluru: Karnataka Home Minister Araga Jnanendra said Tuesday that the state police department was in touch with the central intelligence agencies, IB and RAW, over satellite phone calls from the state to various foreign countries.
Replying to a question raised by former minister and Congress MLA UT Khader, on the issue of usage of banned satellite phones in the state, the minister said that after the Mumbai attacks in 2011 the use of satellite phones has been banned in sea waters by the Director General of Shipping in 2012. Their usage has been banned generally in the country.
However, despite the ban, as many as 250 satellite phone calls were tracked in 2020 and 220 satellite phone calls were tracked in 2021 till date in various parts of the state. The government has taken serious note of the development and was keeping a close watch on this, he said.
Araga Jnanendra explained that the state police department is in touch with central intelligence agencies such as Internal Security Division (ISD), IB (Intelligence Bureau) and Research and Analysis Wing (RAW).
“We are exchanging inputs with them. Since it is a matter of national security and it is regarding international calls being made from Malnad region and other places, the issue cannot be discussed openly,” he said.
Araga Jnanendra while commenting on the arrest of Pakistan’s ISI spy in Bengaluru said, Karnataka Police have arrested an agent of Pakistan. “They are gathering information from him. Though the developments have caused a sense of fear, we have faith in our security agencies and the threats will be properly dealt with,” he said.
The satellite phone calls were tracked to Pakistan and other countries from the dense forest areas of Dakshina Kannada, Chikmagalur and Yadgir districts recently.
The hilly region of Yadgir district was earlier used as sleeper cell pocket by then banned SIMI outfit.