Spy, mole or just a lonely lady?



It’s been many years since a good spy story broke in India. And Madhuri Gupta unfortunately is turning out to be an also-ran story at best, but funny.

Let me start with a caveat: there is no official version of the story yet, not one released on a signed statement by any wing of the government involved.

Stories about espionage and counter-espionage are very tricky to report and follow. No one actually confirms or denies them, so journalists go with whatever they can lay their hands on.

At Hindustan Times, we are printing information confirmed by at least two sources. Though it’s not easy, we managed and quite well so far – been ahead of the curve.

On day one, we had the bit about Gupta telling her investigators that she was surprised it took the Indian establishment so long to catch her. The second day we landed the juiciest bit yet on the story.

And it goes like this: Gupta was looking for male company and she found it in a Pakistani police officer Mudassar Rana, who, incidentally wanted a little more – essentially confidential information on India. Sure, Gupta said, anything for you.

Every morning, she would gather the day’s Urdu papers, pick out some juicy bits, write them in English and pass them on to Rana, who never suspected anything amiss.

Gupta got Rana and Rana got, what he thought was, information. Neat, isn’t it?

Except she was probably passing on some real time intel too, the kind of stuff available to a junior officer like her.

Gupta might have even blown the cover of the intelligence men posted there – not the Pakistanis needed her help to that (they already know). Great story, but the reporting on it has been hampered by lack of information.

When the story first broke, we jumped in excitement: a woman spying on India for Pakistan? Mata Hari, some one said, predictably referring the world’s most famous double agent.

But Gupta is no double agent.

And, we realized by and by, she was not much of an agent.

Actually, one hell of an agent, it now figures.

Can you get cleverer than this, by passing on information from the local press?

By the way, hope you know the source of a lot of the so-called secret information collected by intelligence agencies – newspapers. And they admit it, mostly in an unguarded moment (under the influence of liquor).

Is it possible Rana had outsourced his job to Gupta?

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  • Mohan Lal Bhatnagar

    Hello Sir,
    I read all the news papers and I was shock to know about Miss Madhuri Gupta. It is enough. My suggestion that we should not waste time and put Madhuri on “Lie detector test ” than we will come to know about real story. How much damage done to the Nation by Madhuri Gupta. On that basis we have to do lot more to recover all.
    Mohan Lal Bhatnagar

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  • gul

    Why is it most of the spies who have been arrested so far have been Hindus. Pakistan cannot find enough muslims in India to do the spying? And most Indian spies arrested in Pakistan are Sikhs.

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  • John

    I am not very much concerned about Madhuri Gupta.She is just a tip of the iceberg.Many of our diplomats worldwide are involved in corruption and illegal activities.IFS has to be sorted out.But who will bell the cat???

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  • Major (Retd) Virendra Sharma

    What ever the reasons this lady is dishing out to the investigators/ interrogators, there can never be any ground to work against the safety, security and the well being of the nation, which has given us birth and nurtured us. No amount of explanations must be accepted and if proved that she indeed worked against the security and safety of the nation, that is India, then the only punishment for the GADDARS is the death by the firing squad. Nothing else.

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  • Shadi Katyal

    These are all stories as no official news has been given.Dont worry MEA will have some **** and Bull Story as we saw in Headley case.
    Her very admittance that she passed some Urdu paper news etc is a LIE or hogwash.Does Pakistan
    High commissioner not read Ur due papers of India.
    Her visit to Kashmir is another mystery and who was the driver? did they take photographs of Indian garrison on way?Why did she come through Wagha while as diplomat she could have crossed from POK but evidently she came to get some information for her lover.She must have been assigned some important information and to prove she took the trip. What did she do in Sunderbal??What information she passed to her handler?
    Who is her God father that she was assigned to Pakistan?: what is the story behind. There is lot which we dont know and may never know as MEA might try to white wash like Headley Visa case?

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  • http://hindustantimes tariq syed

    miss gupta knew that she had passed highly classified information to the pakistanis. this went on for two years where you could get real emotional in relationship and can tend to do whatever. I am glad she is apprehended. about the situation between these two countries are known to each other, its just a matter of confirmation. she may have passed information which the isi already knew about. so no big deal. Its happening on both sides. Do not make a hugh story of this incident.

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    Deep Reply:

    About Madhuri Gupta. It is very sad that the media is running amok. she has not yet signed a single statement. The interogating officers have not yet given a single statement. She was simply called back and arrested on the complaint of Indian Mission RAW Chief Sharma.

    The media this morning ran with a story that her doctor friends are involved with her. Now, her friend Dr. Lata is her best diffendent. Madhuri wanted to retire and built a temple at her home in Krishna nagar and live. Are these signs of a spy.

    Our media sells sensation. They did a great job. Created a monster out of Madhuri Gupta. And now they are just silent. WHAT A SHAME. LETS FIRST GET THE FACTS STRAIGHT BEFORE KILLING THIS WOMAN.

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  • m.s.kaushal

    Madhuri Gupta must have exceeded her limit of mixing with the local in Pakistan , if she is holding bank balance which is above the salary she draw may lead us to believe that she was doing all activity for money, if she was not doing for money then why was she mixing with the local and that too a police man, strange but the story has twist & turn

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  • manish1957

    People like Madhuri Gupta should be tried under treason , and no mercy should be shown to her for her present mental and physical condition . Though it concerns her private life, it is not important whether she slept with a **** in her state of loneliness, but she betrayed the trust of the nation , and she should be given the severest punishment as a precedent to others .

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  • Dev Saha

    It was a big miss from RAW if we were really being told the truth. How could this not be foreseen by Indians is very puzzling? Was this just another little game that Indians played on information hungry Pakistanis? That makes more sense to me. I am not sure what to believe with such a simple spy story.

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  • http://helptheworld.hpage.com,howandwhysuch.blogspot.com najeebkhan

    the officers are there in embassies to officiate not to make friends. already the intelligence have lot to do in country, now they will have to accompany diplomats and others because enemies r in our country itself and a new challenge to screen them,this has created doubt for all other employees of govt of india . if found guilty after interrogation and trial, strong punishment shud b given.v have to see what is fact and govt should appoint a very senior team for investigation.

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  • sam

    Good match!…A frustrated woman with a frustrated country Pakistan. Let us not start witch hunting..there are many diplomats who are doing good job for our country. Madhuri is a kind of person who blame others for their own failures; she is a failure both in relationship and career! She is the rot, and she deserves to be thrown in the bin!!

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  • A.M.FAZIL

    YOU HAVE SIMPLIFIED IT ALL,Mr.YASHWANTH RAJ! NOW IT SEEMS LIKE A THREAD FOR A BOLLYWOOD MASALA MOVIE. READING IT ONE MIGHT THINK THAT YOU HAVE A SOFT CORNER FOR HER.YOU SIMPLY SAY THAT GUPTA GOT RANA AND RANA GOT WHAT HE THOUGHT INFORMATION. I,M A LITTLE CONFUSED, Mr. RAJ,IS IT THE WAY TO PRESENT SUCH A HIGHLY SENSITIVE ISSUE? SHE IS A TRAITOR TO OUR COUNTRY,Mr. RAJ, AND I THINK YOU COULD HAVE BEEN A LITTLE MORE SERIOUS, RATHER THAN SARCASTIC.

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  • Vikas

    If Madhuri has an additional source of income by passing newspaper information to her handler then there is nothing wrong with it. In fact, it should be encouraged by Indian Government so that instead of giving them a salary they should start taking it from other country. This way we can save our secular countries’ money which could be utilized in Dalit/Minority upliftment

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  • Vikas

    We all need ‘Chiggy Wiggy’ at one point of time or other. If shez giving out newspaper information for
    ‘Chiggy Wiggy.’ There’s nothing wrong in it. I wanna ‘Chiggy Wiggy’ with you guy. I wanna ‘Chiggy Wiggy’ with you babe. NOw Supreme Court has also allowed Chiggy Wiggy b4 marriage.

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  • S.Gardia

    I think we are reading too much.
    There might be no story in the first place.

    What we hear from MEA and Govt officials is silence.
    So probably some day a movie might come out to tell the story.

    So we should move over to the next topic. This story of spy and so on
    has totally cooled the story of IPL by the way.

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  • indian

    A traitor’s punishment is death…But in India where congress govt is encouraging terrorist criminals like yasin malik, syed gilani of kashmir, or afzal guru or kasab…what can you expect. Congress has surrendered the interest of the country for staying in power.

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  • nazir

    storm in a tea cup……what secrets of national security could she hold? pure and simple victimisation.

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  • Chaman

    Good thought Shiela…Lets start clean the corrupt scums from your home….Your son was caught carrying Rs 10 lakhs and left it in the train compartment…any idea if that money was accounted for….please explain.

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  • Samaresh. Kr.Goswami

    This is nothing but the attempts by the Congress-ruled state-Governments to cover up the misuse and usuption of public money in meaningless spendings by extracting more and more money from the ordinary middle class members of public. This is the similar state with Haryana as well ,where the state Government has mindlessly and insensibly raised the circle rates by almost 2.5 times in just about a year’s time,because Bhupinder Singh Hooda now knows it very well that he, under no condition,can ever get re-elected after the mischiefs he has done with publics’ expectations and assurances as well as with public exchequer..Shiela Dikshit has also done similar wrongs in course of CWG.Nothing different has happened in Mumbai .These are all the stunts of the ruling Congress Government and the members of public should ruthlessly try and take over the reins of Command and control,if middle class people are to survive.The Britishers robbed India and the Indians by openly telling them,but these seudo-robbers are robbing India and the indians clandestinely and behind their backs.They are worse than the Britishers!

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  • http://delurk.wordpress.com/2011/ geekay

    I do not know why are you insisting that “It would do nothing to curb black money”. I am not a congress supporter but Anna supporter. I recently bought a property for 48L
    in Rohini. The seller did not want me to pay full price in white which I wanted to pay. So, I had to accept whatever they were insisting on. I needed to accept the situation as I had to leave the country in 2/3 days time. They did not want to accept full money in white as first it meant they have to pay full income tax and then they were saying circle rate is far less and I can only pay according to circle rate. Well, not knowing enough about the need of all these circle rates etc, I had to accept their argument. Well, in UK, there are no circle rates and all transactions are done by solicitors(one solicitor each for buyer and seller) by using demand draft and no black money exchanges hands. Govt gets full stamp duty and it is kept low (0 to 4%). Since, the property prices in India are almost to UK level, why the stamp duty should not be kept low. Then people will not try to evade it. Certainly more circle rates means more white money. In some ways, it is good for govt by bringing more revenue as well as for general public. ITax dept can not claim that transaction have been completely done by black money so such an asset should be confiscated. My feeling is that central govt should bring some uniform legislation across India but stamp duty can be decided by state. Property in Delhi is based on bubble value as also in other metros. I am waiting for a while for the crash to begin, but it does not seem coming. There was a report on how many unsold properties are there in relation to complete sale.The overhang of unsold properties certainly suggests crash is looming in all metros unless of course banks continue lending astronomically and salaries keep going up. If crash happens, then circle rates will appear very small irritation.

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  • Chris

    Why is she called ‘Aunty’? Don’t you know that these age-specific titles are another kind of rudeness?

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  • Nishant Sharma

    The author is either incredibly stupid, or dishonet, while Sheila Aunty is right. Real estate companies don’t need excuses to raise prices. They will price it a point, where somebody is willing to buy. If circle rates are lower than market price,bit only encourages, dishonest people to cheat and use black money. Circle rates should be as close to market price of the property as possible, while stamp duty percentage rates should be much lower.

    Nishant

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  • Rajan

    No single measure can control black money circulation. Pegging realty prices at a realistic level that most people are willing to pay and charging registration fees on that price is only one measure. The Delhi government can also help by reducing the registration charges from the current level of 6 per cent to, say 4 per cent, so that the buyers are not overcharged by the government. But to say that the higher circle rates would cause problems to middle class buyers is a lame excuse for not fixing circle rates at levels that most people are required to pay even now.

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  • Anonymous

    Very easy; give away whatever you & your son have looted.

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  • PatriotIndian

    Property transactions are the source and home of black money. People should pay full rates for stamp duty, for example many properties in Delhi sell for over Rs.6,00,000 per square yard, but the maximum circle rate is only Rs.2,15,000 per square yard.

    People have been stealing from the nation by under declaring property values for so long there should be an investigation on this, and recovery should be made from those who have underpaid.

    The other things, is that property titles should be dematted in same manner as stock market holdings have been done, and banks should hold property titles in a demat account. Then as the transfer will be done though banks, benami property business will finish and black money will be unearthed, and banks can collect stamp duty in the same manner they collect demat charges.

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  • Rocky

    Looks like the author of this article either lives in a cuckoo land or is in league with the black marketeers. Flats in Vasant kunj are already selling at more than Rs1 crore. Earlier, the sellers and buyers would register the property at one third the price. This way, they pay less property taxes while rest of the sale price is paid under the table. That is where the black money circulates. It is a shame that such a reputable paper like TOI allows such ignorant bloggers to post misleading articles.

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  • V.Sivasubramaniam

    With immediate effect, all money transactions MUST be thru’ electronic media. There should NOT be paper money at all.Every payment and receipts be stored in the concerned person’s name for a good 100 years and beyond. We have been practicing paying extra to babus since ages, time to stop it forthwith. Trust be we all are preparing ground for our children plight in the years to come.

    V.Sivasubramaniam

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  • Anonymous

    Bang on target. I have always been of the view that property price in India are artificially high. It is due to entry of politicians and underworld in real estate market. These two kinds of people are more interest in profits that are 200% or more and because of these SOBs, other real estate developer too are jacking up the prices…

    Loot lo India…

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  • Rockyfranco

    Yes why not. When Thug guru Ramdev, sri sri can fight against black money. Why not Sheila Dixit?

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  • vinod

    The hike is just one of the means for funding ,not for individuals but for party coffers, for next elections in UP. Its simple logic without maths ..to reign supreme in Delhi for past 15 years as CM is no joke. Hats off to the Team dixit..Hope IIM’s will appreciate as it certainly deserve tobe included as a Compulsory case studies in their curriculum.

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  • Siddharth

    Property prices are not artificially high. It is about the principle of demand and supply. The prices are high because there are buyers in the market. For a person who wants property at low rates needs to look at places with less facilities and less security. If the property prices are forcibly reduced then there will be a shortage of property. You can read the book “Economics in One lesson”.

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  • http://delurk.wordpress.com/2011/ geekay

    I would have thought that after the exchange with the other people and me who commented on your blog, you must have rethought about the black money and circle rates. The best course would have been to react to other peoples’ comments if you wanted to entrench on to your existing beliefs or you should have come out with a new blog onto the same topic sooner or later.
    The fact that if any govt wants to issue any circle rates it means they are immediately telling people to use and create black money in properties. Surprisingly, you have never thought of running any campaign to force the govt for land and property reforms. If they abolish circle rates and reduce stamp duty then all black money will disappear provided all transactions take place via banks. Since everybody is used to circle rates, so abolishing them will require a very big will power on the part of govt, I think any rise in the circle rates must get linked with stamp duty reduction
    at the same time and gradually they will reach at the right level where circle rates won’t be needed any more and dropped by govt.

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  • પાટનગર ગાંધીનગર

    I am thinking that central govt should bring some uniform legislation across India but stamp duty can be decided by state.

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  • Abu Ahmed

    You have been to Lukhnow and met some of your sources, who are higher caste. Cared to go to inner UP and meet with Dalit sources? You would have gained instant gyan of a different kind.

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  • Anonymous

    Hi

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  • rahul verma

    Balanced view.

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  • Kumars1

    The aid should be rejected. And India should adopt a ‘buy British last’ policy as Malaysia did which soon focused minds in the British press. We are a poor country and admit it. Our security is paramount. We have got ‘neighbours from hell’. India should also stop issuing visas to journalists who rush to India and mock our poverty. Needless to say some blame can be laid at Britain’s door. We do not invade and bomb other countries eg. Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Bosnia, etc. We are fed up of all this humbug!

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