Man involved in spying for Pakistan arrested in Gujarat

Saqlain had bought an Indian SIM card and got his WhatsApp activated, and it was being operated by his Pakistani handlers to inject spyware.
Man involved in spying for Pakistan arrested in Gujarat
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The Gujarat Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) on Sunday arrested a man who was absconding in a case linked with espionage for Pakistan.

Mohammed Saqlain, a resident of Jamnagar in Gujarat, was involved in espionage activities at Pakistan's behest.

As per the charges against him, Saqlain had bought an Indian SIM card and got his WhatsApp activated, which was being operated by his Pakistani handlers.

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Man involved in spying for Pakistan arrested in Gujarat

The number was used for spying against the Indian Army personnel deployed in Jammu and Kashmir and confidential information was being leaked to Pakistani operatives.

In October 2023, Gujarat ATS arrested 53-year-old espionage agent Labhsankar Maheswari from Tarapur (Gujarat), based on specific input provided by Military Intelligence.

As per sources, Saqlain had provided an activated SIM card to Labhsankar Maheshwari, an erstwhile Pakistani citizen, who got Indian citizenship and was arrested in October 2023 by ATS, which was acting upon a Military Intelligence tip-off about a Pakistani Intelligence agency targeting Indian Military personnel on WhatsApp by sending spyware.

The case got eyeballs as Maheshwari was a Pakistani, who came to Gujarat for his wife's pregnancy treatment and 'became an Indian', but subsequently was held for spying.

Saqlain had gone absconding after the arrest of Maheshwari in October 2023.

The conspiracy came to light last year in July, when Military Intelligence officials detected a nefarious campaign by a Pakistani Intelligence Operative (PIO).

This operative was using WhatsApp number- 90xxxx6792, to compromise Android mobile handsets of serving defence forces personnel, mostly having wards studying in different Army Public Schools (APS) across the country.

He would lure them into installing certain malicious Android applications (".apk" files) mostly under the garb of a campaign so named "Har Ghar Tiranga" just before Independence Day (last year).

The WhatsApp user, posing as an APS official, used to send the malicious application to such targets with a text message encouraging them to install the application and upload their ward's photo with the national flag on the application, so as to participate in the competition.

Agencies believe Saqlain's connection to Maheshwari was not happenstance. It was a meticulously crafted link in a chain of espionage that threatened national security. 

Source: India Today

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