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Modi govt's direct involvement obvious: Cong after NYT report on Pegasus spying

The New York Times in an investigative piece claimed that India bought Israeli spyware in a $2 billion deal in 2017

Saturday January 29, 2022 2:57 PM, ummid.com with inputs from Agencies

NYT on Pegasus

New Delhi: After the new expose in an international publication on Pegasus, the Congress on Saturday alleged that the Modi government is involved in the whole incident and snooped rivals which is an act of treason.

The New York Times in an investigative piece claimed that India bought Israeli spyware in a $2 billion deal in 2017. Responding to the report Congress called it treason and also accused the BJP government of misleading the Supreme Court of India.

"Modi government bought Pegasus to spy on our primary democratic institutions, politicians and public. Government functionaries, opposition leaders, armed forces, judiciary all were targeted by phone tapping", senior Congress leader and MP Rahul Gandhi wrote on Twitter.

"This is treason. Modi government has committed treason," he added.

Addressing a press conference, leader of opposition in the Rajya Sabha, Mallikarjun Kharge and Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala later accused Prime Minister Modi and BJP government in New Delhi of being directly involved in the high profile snooping case.


"The Modi Government is the deployer and executor of the illegal and unconstitutional snooping and spying racket through Israeli surveillance spyware Pegasus and the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi is himself involved!"

"This is a brazen 'Hijack of Democracy' and 'An Act of Treason'," they said.

Referring the NYT report, Surjewala said, Modi Government purchased Pegasus Spyware in 2017 and other military technology as the "centrepieces" of a package including "weapons and intelligence gear worth roughly $2 billion" from Israel during PM Modi's visit.

"It is not a coincidence that the Budget of National Security Council Secretariat (NSCS) reporting to NSA went up from Rs 33 crore to Rs 333 crore in 2017-18", the Congress said.

He said:

"Modi Government deployed Pegasus spyware for snooping and spying upon Rahul Gandhi and his staff members; Former PM Deve Gowda, Former Chief Ministers - Siddaramaiah and Kumaraswamy; Former BJP Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje Scindia; BJP Cabinet Minister, Prahlad Singh Patel, his wife and staff; Present IT Minister, Ashwini Vaishnaw & his wife; OSD of Union Minister, Smriti Irani; Abhishek Banerjee, MP & nephew of Ms Mamata Banerjee; Praveen Togadia, former head of VHP and others."

The Congress alleged that not only this, Pegasus spyware target list also included Supreme Court judges; Election Commission of India; CBI Director, advocates, activists and even journalists of prominent media organisations.

The party accused the Modi government of misleading the Supreme Court which directly questioned it on the purchase and use of the questionable software.


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