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Home » India » Pegasus Expose Done For Ulterior Motives: Press Club of India Demands Centre Explain Spyware

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Pegasus Expose Done For Ulterior Motives: Press Club of India Demands Centre Explain Spyware

Image used for Representational purposes only. (Source: Pexels)

New Delhi: The Press Club of India on Monday (July 19) demanded that the Centre should ‘come out clean and clarify’ the Pegasus spyware.

More than 300 verified mobile phone numbers, including of two serving ministers, over 40 journalists, three opposition leaders and one sitting judge besides scores of business persons and activists in India could have been targeted for hacking through an Israeli spyware sold only to government agencies, an international media consortium reported on Sunday.

ALSO READ: Pegasus Expose: Israeli Firm NSO Threatens Defamation Lawsuit Over ‘Outrageous Allegations’

In its tweet, Press Club of India wrote, ”This is the first time in the history of this country that all pillars of our democracy — judiciary, Parliamentarians, media, executives & ministers — have been spied upon. This is unprecedented and the PCI condemns unequivocally. The snooping has been done for interior motives”.

What is disturbing is that a foreign agency, which has nothing to do with national interest of the country, was engaged to spy on its citizens. This breeds distrust and will invite anarchy. The Govt should come out clean on this front and clarify. #PegasusProject”, it added. 

The report was published by The Wire news portal from India as also 16 other international publications including Washington Post, The Guardian and Le Monde, as media partners to an investigation conducted by Paris-based media non-profit organisation Forbidden Stories and rights group Amnesty International into a leaked list of more than 50,000 phone numbers from across the world that are believed to have been the target of surveillance through Pegasus software of Israeli surveillance company NSO Group.

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The Wire reported that forensic tests conducted as part of the media investigation project on a small cross-section of phones associated with these numbers revealed clear signs of targeting by Pegasus spyware in 37 phones, of which 10 are Indian.

ALSO READ: Pegasus Expose: National Security Under Threat, Warns Congress’ Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury

The Wire said the numbers of those in the database from India include over 40 journalists, three major opposition figures, one constitutional authority, two serving ministers in the Narendra Modi government, current and former heads and officials of security organisations and scores of businesspersons, as also a sitting judge.

NSO Group, the Israeli company which sells Pegasus worldwide, says its clients, are confined to “vetted governments”, believed to number 36, according to The Wire.

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