Parliamentary Panel Takes Up WhatsApp Snooping, Kudankulam Attack

The meeting was marked by sharp differences among its members over whether to take up the snooping issue.

2 min read
The parliamentary committee is headed by Congress’ Shashi Tharoor.

A meeting of a parliamentary Committee on Information Technology, headed by Congress leader Shashi Tharoor, discussed the WhatsApp Pegasus snooping issue and the Kudankulam cyber attack on Wednesday, 20 November, PTI reported.

The meeting, which ran for over two-and-a-half hours, was marked by sharp differences among its members over whether to take up the snooping issue or not, which was resolved only after a vote was taken.

Tharoor’s casting vote in favour of taking up the issue sealed a long-heated discussion, with secretaries to Home, and Electronics and Information Technology ministries being kept waiting for over two hours, according to the news agency.

He had earlier written a letter to the Committee members, saying the alleged use of technology for snooping on Indian citizens was a matter of "grave concern" and it would be discussed in its meeting on Wednesday.

A member from the BJP said there was come confusion about whether the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) should be examined by the Committee, following which another member alleged that "some BJP members were trying to create problems by claiming that Committee should not make inquiries from the DAE."

Earlier, the IT Minister had said in the Lok Sabha that while the government was aware of the Pegasus spyware, allegations that the government was using it were made to malign the government of India and was misleading.

Minister of State in The Prime Minister’s Office Jitendra Singh also acknowledged in the Parliament that the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant had been targeted by a cyber attack.

(With inputs from PTI.)

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