Kashkouli spied on Chabad House
He was then deported to Iran from Delhi, last month. Interestingly, the topic of Kashkouli’s thesis was ‘Foreign policy of the Islamic Republic of Iran during the presidency of Khatmi’. He had enrolled himself for the programme in 2007 at UoP’s Department of Defence and Strategic Studies.
He lived in Bavdhan and was an active member of the Iranian Students’ Association. Police claim Kashkouli worked as an undercover agent of the Iranian government. “He came to India under the pretext of being a student but was keeping a close eye on the Jewish centres in Pune.
He had collected information about visitors’ movements at the Chabad House and the Synagogue which he forwarded to intelligence officials in Tehran,” said an SB officer. The needle of suspicion pointed towards him especially when it was found he regularly travelled in a private car to the Iranian Consulate in Mumbai for unexplained reasons.
He used to hire a city-based driver for the purpose, whom the SB officials also detained for questioning. The driver, who had over a period of time become familiar with Kashkouli, said that he was employed by the Iranian government and that top government officials from Iran would often come down to Mumbai especially to meet him.
Intelligence officials zeroed in on Kashkouli’s movements in January 2011 when they stumbled upon the fact that in four years he had not been able to advance with his PhD thesis neither did he submit the progress report.