LAHORE Two leading British diplomats have been found involved in spying activities in the remote areas of the country and they were carrying spying equipment, taking pictures and drawing maps of sensitive installations, The Nation learnt on Saturday. A couple of days ago, some law enforcement agencies officials intercepted these secret agents and recovered hidden spy cameras, surveillance and counter-surveillance equipments, pen recording devices besides other intelligence gadgets from their possession. Both the undercover operatives were busy in mysterious activities on bicycles near Phalina Dam, some five kilometres away from GT Road near Mandra, Rawalpindi district, when local policemen intercepted them, a source privy to the development disclosed, requesting anonymity. Later, they introduced themselves as diplomats identified as Mr John Grinyer, Senior Economic Advisor, and Mr David Staurat Gray, Governance Advisor Department for International Development (DFID), British High Commission, Islamabad. The policemen recovered all the suspicious equipment, photos of sensitive installations and recordings from their possession and demanded No Objection Certificate (NOC) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, a prerequisite for foreign diplomats under Pakistans Constitution. The so-called diplomats not only failed to produce the NOC but also made a mockery of the Pakistani laws. You know we gave you independence but we are still your masters, a high-ranking police source quoted one of the diplomats as having told the policemen. In the meantime, the Ministry of Interior came into action and a top official contacted the police hierarchy by phone and ordered them to immediately release the honourable diplomats but also provide them security so that they could go back to the British High Commission safely. The policemen also handed them over all the recovered items. Police sources said that both the diplomats had reached Mankiala and parked their Lexus Jeep bearing Registration Number (NS-857) and left towards Phalina Dam on bicycles. We recovered cameras, a binocular, GPS and a Google map with marked route from their possession. We observed them for a considerable time as they were taking pictures of the area and consulting map/GPS regularly while making frequent stops during their bicycle ride, a police official said, adding that they were released due to strong pressure from the quarters concerned. The British diplomats failed to produce NOC from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, he maintained. As per laws, foreign diplomats are not allowed to visit remote areas especially the 'prohibited areas without proper NOC from the competent authority. However, both the diplomats did not bother to get prior permission from the concerned department which is a clear violation of the law. Foreign diplomats need to strictly abide by the laws of the land and must get permission for such adventures, a legal expert commented. When contacted by phone Mr Rob Murphy, a spokesperson of the British High Commission in Islamabad, confirmed the incident and insisted that both the men were from the DFID and the British High Commission. Let me check it first and then I will be able to comment on the issue. Please contact me again after one hour, he replied. But when contacted again, he did not pick up the phone. Another spokesperson from the British High Commission contacted this reporter by phone and said, Old staff are expected to follow the correct procedures. This is our statement in response to the story, she added.