Pegasus-WhatsApp spying: Digvijaya asks govt to come clean, demands JPC

Digvijaya Singh

Calling attention on the snooping scandal involving Israeli spyware Pegasus, senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh on Thursday alleged in the Rajya Sabha that top leaders of the government had full information about it.

In a scathing attack, the veteran Congress leader said that the government had procured Pegasus as part of an organised plan and used it illegally.

He alleged that Home Minister Amit Shah had a few months back met senior executives of Facebook which owns WhatsApp and discussed about Pegasus at length.

"I demand that the government shares the minutes of the meeting in the House. The minutes prepared by both, government and Facebook, be shared so that the government does not mislead the House by editing it," Digvijaya Singh said.

The Rajya Sabha member urged IT and Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad to share all the information related to the snooping scandal. He said the minister should not keep it secret citing national security.

In case the government hid the information related to citizens' fundamental rights and privacy, the Congress MP said, a joint parliamentary committee (JPC) must be set up to investigate the issue.

He termed the issue as sensitive and sought the support of political parties for forming the JPC.

Digvijaya Singh posed some serious questions to the government and sought answers. He asked the government if WhatsApp had given the list of persons affected by the Pegasus spyware and if the government had data-sharing arrangement with messaging service firms like WhatsApp.

He claimed that Pegasus cannot only be used for hacking of phones but also to plant videos, documents and messages.

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