Navy takes up Scorpene leak issue with French government

New Delhi, Aug 25 (IANS) A day after reports emerged that documents related to India’s Scorpene submarine have been leaked, the Indian Navy on Thursday said the issue has been taken up with the French government.

In a statement issued here, the Indian Navy said the matter has been taken up with the Director General of Armaments of the French government, “expressing concern over this incident and has requested the French government to investigate this incident with urgency and share their findings with the Indian side”.

Over 22,000 pages of information were reportedly leaked from DCNS, the French company that designed Scorpene submarines being built in India.

According to sources, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar had told the Indian Navy to ask DCNS about the leak.

The statement added that an internal audit of procedures to rule out any security breach is also being undertaken.

“The matter is being taken up with concerned foreign governments through diplomatic channels to verify the authenticity of the reports,” the Indian Navy said.

“The Government of India, as a matter of abundant precaution, is also examining the impact if the information contained in the documents claimed to be available with the Australian sources is compromised. The detailed assessment of potential impact is being undertaken by a high-level committee constituted by the Ministry of Defence, and the Indian Navy is taking all necessary steps to mitigate any probable security compromise.”

The statement ruled out any threat from the documents posted on The Australian newspaper’s website.

“The documents that have been posted on the website by an Australian news agency have been examined and do not pose any security compromise as the vital parameters have been blacked out.”

Sensitive data related to India’s Scorpene submarines has been leaked from French shipbuilder DCNS, which designed the submarine, comprising documents over 22,000 pages.

Navy officials on Wednesday downplayed the leak, stating that there was “nothing to get alarmed” about, as the specifications in the documents will not be same as in the submarine to be finally manufactured.

The Defence Minister has sought a report on the extent of damage following the leak, which, he said, appeared to be an incident of “hacking”.

–IANS

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