The Washington Post, along with 16 other media partners from around the world, has released the investigation report titled ‘The Pegasus Project’. In this investigation report it has been claimed that private Israeli software Pegasus was used to tap the phone. It also succeeded in hacking 37 smartphones around the world. These smartphones belonged to prominent journalists, human rights activists, business executives and two women linked to the murder of Saudi Arabian journalist Jamal Khassogi.
Actually this military grade spyware has got a license to use to track terrorists and criminals, but through this 37 smartphones were successfully hacked. There were more than 50 thousand phone numbers in the list. The investigation claimed that countries known to spy on their citizens are also clients of Israeli firm NSO Group. NSO Group is a worldwide leader in the world’s spyware industry.
Detective of 300 people in India
According to news website The Wire, around 300 people in India were spied through Pegasus spyware, including 40 journalists. Those whose phones have been claimed to be hacked include from ministers to opposition leaders, journalists, legal community, businessmen, government officials, scientists and activists. It is claimed that these people were being monitored through phones. However, the central government has denied this report.
Claims of spying on journalists of many media organizations of India
The investigation report claimed that journalists associated with media organizations such as The Indian Express, Hindustan Times, News18, India Today, The Hindu, The Wire and The Pioneer were targeted through Pegasus spyware. It is claimed that an Indian agency had tapped their phones between 2017 and 2019 to monitor journalists working in these institutions.
Government of India denied the investigation report
The Government of India has said on this matter that the allegation that the government has been accused of spying on some people has no strong basis nor is there any truth in it. The statement said that a similar claim had been made in the past, in which it was said that Pegasus was used through WhatsApp. That report was also not based on facts and the claims were rejected by all parties. WhatsApp had denied these allegations even in the Supreme Court.
It has been said in the statement that the IT Minister has talked in detail on this. He had also given a statement in Parliament that no tapping of any kind has been done by the government agency in an unauthorized manner. The government agency for interception works only under protocol. Tapping is done for some big reason and in view of national security. This news is based on speculation and exaggeration to defame Indian democracy and its institutions. The government has clarified in its reply that the printed report is bogus and the factless report has been printed with prejudice.