New Delhi: The Congress demanded a through independent probe on Monday into the issue involving the reported phone tapping of prominent personalities including journalists in India using Israel’s Pegasus spyware.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi took to Twitter and criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the matter while using the hashtag “Pegasus”.
“We know what he’s been reading-everything on your phone”, Rahul said on Twitter.
“I’m wondering what you guys are reading these days,” Gandhi had said two days ago in a tweet.
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) July 19, 2021
On Sunday, an international media consortium reported that more than 300 verified mobile phone numbers, over 40 journalists, three opposition leaders, two serving ministers and one sitting judge besides scores of business persons and activists in India might have been targeted for hacking through an Israeli spyware sold by the government agencies only.
However, the government has dismissed allegations of any kind of surveillance from their part on specific people, stating it “has no concrete basis or truth associated with it whatsoever”.
Congress leader Shashi Tharoor has also called for an independent judicial or Parliamentary committee investigation into the issue after the government denied having any involvement in the alleged phone tapping using Pegasus spyware.
“I feel that there should be a thorough independent judicial inquiry or a joint parliamentary committee. We cannot just brush it under the carpet,” he told reporters.
“GoI has denied resorting to unauthorised surveillance. The question this raises is, if #Pegasus is only sold to governments, which other govts (China/Pak?) are using it to snoop on prominent Indian citizens? Shouldn’t the authorities call for an independent investigation,” Tharoor also said on Twitter.
Leader of Congress in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury on Monday said he will raise the issue in the Parliament.
“Our national security is under threat. I will definitely raise the Pegasus spyware issue in the House,” Chowdhury told ANI.
Ahead of the commencement of the Monsoon session of the Parliament, several members raised concerns about the Pegasus spyware and gave a suspension of business notice in this regard.
Communist Party of India (CPI) Rajya Sabha MP Binoy Viswam on Monday has given a suspension of business notice under rule 267 over revelations of the scale of Pegasus spyware.
AAP Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh also gave a suspension of business notice under rule 267 over revelations of the scale of Pegasus spyware.
The Monsoon session began on Monday and will conclude on August 13. Members of Parliament in Rajya Sabha paid tribute to MPs and personalities who lost their lives this year, including veteran actor Dilip Kumar and veteran athlete Milkha Singh.
Congress is also geared up to raise various matters, including the issue of snooping. Congress MP Manish Tewari has moved an adjournment motion on the issue of farmers’ protest.