Posted by: Shaun | June 22, 2008

India’s Beijing Intel Staff in Disarray

The Times of India has reported that a member of the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), India’s foreign intelligence service, has been recalled from his post in Beijing.  The Times writes:

Fresh controversy enveloped the mission with RAW station chief Uma Mishra being recalled this week, apparently for a poorly handled investigation into a “honeytrap” case.

Mishra is expected to return to India soon and this will be the second time a RAW official has returned from Beijing under a cloud.

Earlier, another RAW staffer, Manmohan Sharma, was recalled for his alleged affair with a Chinese interpreter. In connection with the Sharma case, an assistant to deputy chief of mission Saurabh Kumar has already been sent back.

The assistant, Gangadharan, was called back to Delhi on “special duty” and then given a recall letter and now it is believed that Kumar himself may be posted out as well after barely a year as deputy chief of mission. Kumar’s replacement is believed to be another [Ministry of External Affairs] official from Vietnam.

It seems that personal indiscretions and a dose of interservice rivavlry (between RAW and the MEA) have served to undermine the efficacy of India’s intelligence mission in the Chinese capital.  China is no doubt pleased to see that its long-time Asian rival is having trouble collecting information in its Beijing.  And, as the article seems to suggest with its reference to a “honeytrap” case, the Chinese may not be entirely uninvolved in the disruption.



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