Will form expert panel to probe Pegasus snooping allegations: Centre to SC

New Delhi: The Centre on Monday told the Supreme Court that the Pegasus snooping allegations will be examined by a group of experts in the field.

The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, in an affidavit, said: “At the outset, it is submitted that I hereby unequivocally deny any and all of the allegations made against the Respondents in the captioned petition and other connected petitions”.

The affidavit further added, “A bare perusal of the captioned petition and other connected petitions makes it clear that the same are based on conjectures and surmises or on other unsubstantiated media reports or incomplete or uncorroborated material”.

The Centre, in a two-page short affidavit, submitted that with a view to dispel any wrong narrative spread by certain vested interests and with an object of examining the issues raised, it will constitute “a committee of experts in the field which will go into all aspects of the issue”.

The Centre further added that the questions on Pegasus has already been clarified on the floor of Parliament by the Union Minister of Railways, Communications and Electronics & Information Technology. “In that view of the matter, in the respectful submission of the deponent, nothing further needs to be done at the behest of the petitioner, more particularly when they have not made out any case”, added the affidavit.

The top court is hearing a batch of petitions seeking various directions, which includes an SIT probe, a judicial inquiry and directions to the government to reveal details about whether it had used the Pegasus software to spy on citizens.

The petitions are listed for hearing later in the day before a bench headed by Chief Justice N.V. Ramana.


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