ERNAKULAM: Sreenish Pookodan, a native of Manjeri, Malappuram district, was arrested on December 20, 2023, following a complaint from the Security Manager of the Cochin Shipyard.
As per the FIR, Sreenish Pookkodan allegedly leaked information, including details about the arrival, maintenance, and positioning of defence ships, to a Facebook account named ‘Angel Payal’ from March 1 to December 19.
Sreenish Pookkodan also trespassed on an under-construction defense ship, INS Vikrant, and captured images on his mobile phone. Information about visits of VVIPs and incidents inside ships also found to be shared to the Angel Payal social media account. Investigators are probing potential foreign connections of the said account.
Sreenish Pookkodan faces charges under Section 3(1)a and Section 5 of the Official Secrets Act, 1923, relating to penalties for spying and wrongful communication, carrying a potential imprisonment term ranging from 3 to 14 years. Additionally, Section 457, concerning trespassing, carries a potential sentence ranging from 5 to 14 years.
Sreenish’s mobile phone is undergoing examination at cyber forensic laboratories. The investigation team is also seeking details from Facebook. It is indicated that Sreenish mentioned during the interrogation that he shared the pictures of the shipyard under pressure from Angel Payal.
The investigation is exploring whether Sreenish received financial compensation for the shared information. Scrutiny of Sreenish Pookkodan’s bank statements is also underway.
Previously, the name ‘Angel Payal’ surfaced in a case related to information leaks from the Mumbai Naval Dockyard.
On December 13, the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad arrested Gaurav Patil, an apprentice at the Mumbai Naval Dockyard, for sharing details via Facebook.