Pradeep Kurulkar, a senior nuclear scientist formerly working at India’s top defense laboratory, Systems Engineering Laboratory, is being investigated for allegedly leaking highly classified information to an alleged Pakistani spy.
The arrest was made by the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) in May, and Kurulkar is currently in judicial custody.
Kurulkar, who held the position of Director at the esteemed Systems Engineering Laboratory, was found to have been in contact with a Pakistani spy named “Zara Dasgupta” for over seven months.
During their communication, it is alleged that Kurulkar shared sensitive data related to several crucial defense projects.
The leaked information includes details about the Brahmos missiles, Rafael’s jet program, Agni 6 missile launchers, surface-to-air missiles, anti-satellite missiles, Astra missile systems, the drone program, Rustom UAV, Mentor missile, and AK firearms.
The ATS investigation has revealed that Kurulkar engaged in frequent video calls with the alleged spy, often referring to her as “babe.” In addition to sharing classified data, he also disclosed his meeting schedules to Zara.
Kurulkar played a pivotal role in the development of various military engineering equipment and systems as a lead designer and team leader. Some of his notable contributions include the Nirbhay subsonic cruise missile, air defense systems, Prahar, QRSAM, XRSAM, and MRSAM.
Furthermore, Kurulkar was responsible for spearheading the development of pneumatic systems, hyperbaric chambers, mobile power supplies, and missile launchers, showcasing his expertise in diverse areas of defense technology.
If the allegations are proven true, the senior nuclear scientist may face a lifetime in jail for compromising national security.