Pegasus Row: TMC MP gets suspended for tearing up IT minister's statementtext_fields
New Delhi: Trinamool Congress MP Shantanu Sen got suspended from Rajya Sabha on Friday for the remainder of the Monsoon Session of the parliament, reports The Indian Express. The MP received suspension a day after tearing up Union Information Technology Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw's statement on the Pegasus row.
Sen had rushed into the Well of the Rajya Sabha on Thursday, snatched the document held by Vaishnaw, and tore it up. Among several opposition leaders who had entered the well, Sen was protesting against the alleged snooping done by the union government using Israeli spyware Pegasus. The protesting group raised slogans and disrupted the IT minister who rose to speak.
Meanwhile, the IT minister had said that the story published, on July 18, 2021, in the online portal The Wire is highly sensational and baseless. There were many allegations regarding the use of Pegasus on WhatsApp that were raised before. These reports had no factual basis and were denied by all parties in the Supreme Court, the minister said.
The Wire report is intended to malign the Indian democracy and its well-established institutions, the minister alleged. The minister further alleged that the press report appearing a day before the Monsoon Session of the Parliament does not seem coincidental. He also requested all the members of the house to examine the issue on facts and logic.
The Wire had revealed that the Pegasus spyware created by the Israeli NSO group had put 300 Indian phone numbers as potential hacking targets. The portal found this as part of a global collaborative investigation.