New Delhi: Pegasus was used to snoop on key leaders of the Kumarawamy-led JD(S)-Congress coalition in Karnataka and led to the toppling of the ministry in 2019, the Congress alleged on Tuesday.
In a press conference, also attended by other senior party leaders, Congress leader KC Venugopal said that "the BJP had planned to topple the Karnataka government by horse-trading using the Pegasus spyware."
Congress leader and former Karnataka Chief Minister Siddramiah said, "I don't have a mobile phone, which means they tapped my personal secretary Venkatesh's number. He has been with me for 27 years. They also tapped the number of Satish, who was Kumaraswamy's personal assistant."
Online news portal The Wire revealed that in the run up to the toppling of the opposition-run state government in Karnataka in July 2019, the phone numbers of then Deputy Chief Minister G. Parameshwara and the personal secretaries of then Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy and former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah were targeted as crucial phone numbers for snooping.
Siddramiah further said, "The government of India headed by Narendra Modi played this dirty game to topple the opposition government in Karnataka. That is why they tapped the numbers of Satish, Venkatesh and Parameshwara, who was the Deputy Chief Minister in the coalition government. It was a crime committed by the government of India. The matter must be probed and raised in both the Houses of Parliament."