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Centre blocks CPI MP’s Pegasus question in Rajya Sabha as it continues to dodge the controversy in Parliament

While the government moved to block the question citing House rules, it has a history of providing obfuscated answers to parliamentary questions on Pegasus.  The central government sought to disallow a question enquiring about its dealings with the Israeli cyber intelligence firm NSO Group, from being asked in the Rajya Sabha, according to a report in the Hindustan Times. The question, asked by Rajya Sabha MP Binoy Viswam was disallowed on grounds that “the ongoing issue of Pegasus is subjudice after several PILs were filed in the Supreme Court of India," the report stated. Why it matters? The Pegasus revelations came to light a day before the commencement of the monsoon session of the Parliament. Given the implications of the revelation on privacy and other constitutional freedoms, opposition MPs have been adamant about forcing a discussion on Pegasus during the ongoing session. However, the government has brushed the controversy aside by terming it as a “non-issue” and has scuttled every attempt to debate the issue. It put forth a vague statement on the floor of the house which neither confirms nor denies its use. The government has not even ordered an investigation to find out more about the surveillance, despite increasing demands for the same by politicians including some of the government's own allies. Details sought by Binoy Viswam in his question According to the report, Viswam sought the following details in his parliamentary question for the Minister of External Affairs: The number of MoUs that the government has entered into…

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I cover several beats such as Crypto, Telecom, and OTT at MediaNama. I can be found loitering at my local theatre when I am off work consuming movies by the dozen.

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