Wednesday morning the entire world went into frenzy when 22,400 page document detailing Indian Navy secrets and the secret combat capabilities of Scorpene-class submarines were leaked.
To state what lead to the leak or who is behind it is difficult to say at the moment but this is a loss India and several other nations will have to bear.
What are Scorpene-class submarines?
SCB’s are specially designed combative submarines made by French shipbuilding company DCNS.
They are so silent underwater that they are extremely difficult, if not impossible to detect.
But now their sonar capabilities, the noise they generate and details of the combat system they are armed with are totally exposed.
DCNS in the past four years has supplied SCB’s to more than seven countries; the list includes India, Australia, USA, Chile, Brazil and Malaysia.
India had ordered six Scorpene-class submarines for $3 billion.
The first of the Scorpene class submarines being built in India, the INS Kalvari, took part in sea trials in May.
According to DCNS records all nations supplied with have either the same submarine or a variant of it. In either case, this leak will be dangerous for these nations and can use threat to maritime security.
How did the leak happen?
The leak was first reported by an Australian media agency. The documents are marked “Restricted Scorpene India”. The document explains in detail the combative capabilities of the submarines, their placements and its fleet.
This leakage is nothing less than a Christmas gift for neighbour Pakistan that has time and again tried to infiltrate Western Indian Waters.
Since, India had placed one of the submarines on the western front this leak is sure a cause of panic and calls for a change in strategy.
The leak has taken place ‘outside India’ and according to sources there was no ‘hacking’ involved. It is being assumed that DCNS server might have been used to leak the informative document.
USA and Australia have expressed concern over French competence to keep top-notch army data whereas French officials are vehemently denying their fault.
For India, it is bad news. The $3billion deal is now almost a loss for India because it will need to massively change the Scorpene submarines and its placements in Indian waters.
Since this lapse happened not within the country it will be hard to take any action legal or otherwise against the defaulter, so all in all India will suffer.
The repercussions of this leak are yet to be known but this leak has brought to light the loopholes in the security provided by nations to the task of secret-keeping.
A leak of this magnitude can hurt world peace and hence need to be avoided at all cost.
Views presented in the article are those of the author and not of ED.