Ayodhya/Lucknow: Based on specific inputs from the Military Intelligence (MI), a team of Ayodhya Police has recovered a large volume of ‘restricted’ military study materials, mostly digital in nature, from a civilian shopkeeper in Faizabad Cantonment of the temple town.
Official sources told IANS that in January this year, the Lucknow-based MI unit got some credible inputs that some restricted military study materials were in possession of few shopkeepers in Faizabad Cantonment. The input was developed and subsequently shared with the local police and the central intelligence agencies and jointly pursued as ‘Operation Dastavez’.
Two shops were identified as suspected unauthorised holders of ‘restricted’ military study materials in Sadar Bazar area in Faizabad Cantonment.
Wednesday, a team of Ayodhya Police led by Sub-Inspector Sandeep Kumar Tripathy, under the supervision of Inspector (SHO, Cantonment Police Station) Suresh Pandey and following the directions of DIG Deepak Kumar, raided the two shops in Sadar Bazar area.
In the raid, Arif Hussain (36), the owner of a shop called ‘Aarif Stationery’, was found in possession of a large volume of ‘restricted’ military study materials stored in four pen-drives and laptop. Apart from that, printed documents/books prepared using those contents were also recovered from his shop.
Sources said Arif Hussain since long has been gathering digital copies of such study materials from various army personnel, who used to come to his shop for getting photocopy/print-outs of their study materials (both in paper and digital form), without their knowledge.
He used to prepare books/booklets out of these materials and was selling them to buyers whom he felt were from the army, without any verification, sources said. The recovered documents are being examined. Connection of any inimical agency has not yet surfaced in the case.
However, unlawful possession of such ‘restricted’ documents by a civilian and further sale of the same to unverified buyers is seen as a clear breach of security and a matter of concern.
Arif Hussain has been booked by the Cantonment Police Station (Ayodhya) under Sections 3 and 5 of Official Secret Act, 1923, and Sections 419 and 420 of the Indian Penal Code, sources said.