Business Standard

HC seeks government, Army stand on Samba spy case

IANS  |  New Delhi 

The on Friday asked the Centre to file its response on a by two former officials seeking to de-classify all documents pertaining to the "Samba Spy" case. Justice also asked the to file a reply on the and listed the matter for September 3.

The court was hearing a petition filed by former Captains of 7 and Ranbir of 11 Garhwal Rifles through their

The "Samba Spy" case dates back to 1975-1977 when two self-confessed spies and Aya Singh, working as gunners in the artillery regiment of the Army, falsely named Rana and Rathaur as their accomplices.

The two officers were arrested and based on their statements at least 40 other men were implicated and summarily dismissed for allegedly spying for during their posting in Samba sector of Jammu.

In 1979, Rana and Captain Rathaur too were convicted by the Court Martial and sentenced to 14 years of imprisonment for committing offences under the Army Act and the

However, later it was found that their statements were taken under duress and torture. In 2000, the described the case a of justice.

The petitioners told the court that their fundamental rights were grievously violated as the government branded them Pakistani spies without sharing with them documents related to the case and which still remain "classified".

"The documents were not shown to the petitioners as that would have exposed the falsity and malafide behind the whole series of Samba cases thereby helping them establish their innocence," the petition said.

They have sought directions to the government to de-classify and put in public domain all the documents, as more than 40 years have elapsed and no claim of national security can now be raised as all court cases have also ended.

"In all the major democracies around the world including United State of as well as several European countries, documents have a fixed duration of classification and must be mandatorily declassified after a specified time or a specified event," the said.

The petitioners have also cited statements by former and former that the "Samba Spy" case was entirely fabricated and false.



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First Published: Fri, April 12 2019. 19:16 IST