New Delhi: BJP leader and Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy has said the PM will have to face the heat if the government is found guilty by the Supreme Court-appointed committee to look into allegations of unauthorised surveillance using Pegasus software.
Speaking at a virtual interaction organised by the Virat Hindustan Sangam Sunday on the Pegasus controversy, Swamy said: “The issue is whether this matter was done legally or illegally. Legally means it was brought to the cabinet and a resolution was passed. But if it was just the National Security Advisor (NSA) and maybe some ambassador who got the nod from the PM, then like France, the PM would be culpable for prosecution.”
One of the other participants, Ramesh Swamy, then asked: “So if it wasn’t done via due process, then they are in deep soup?”
Swamy replied: “Yes, and I can tell you it wasn’t done with due process.”
The interaction, which premiered on Swamy’s Twitter page, saw him in conversation with journalist J. Gopikrishnan, where the duo discussed the Pegasus snooping row at length.
In a series of reports in July this year, a global consortium of media organisations, including TheWire released names whose mobile devices were alleged targets of hacking using the Israeli software Pegasus. Among them were Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, IT minister Ashwini Vaishnaw, Union Minister of State Prahlad Singh Patel, political strategist Prashant Kishor and Trinamool Congress leader and Mamata Banerjee’s nephew Abhishek Banerjee.
‘They won’t learn anything by tapping me’
Swamy also spoke of how he expected his name on the list of those targeted, but didn’t find it there.
“They won’t learn anything by tapping me. There is no secret in my life, everything is open. I put it out on Twitter,” Swamy said.
However, he added that there may be “another angle” that a friend of his pointed out to him.
“It’s after all an Israeli company (NSO) and somebody like (Ajit) Doval would have immediately expected that if this happens some Israeli friend would have informed me that this is happening,” Swamy said.
“Or else, it makes no sense to leave me out,” he added.
In July, at the time of the revelations, Swamy had publicly questioned the Modi government on the matter, saying: “It is the Modi government’s duty to tell the people of India” on “who paid them (the Israeli company) for the Indian “operation”.”
Also read: Protection of sources vital for freedom of press, says SC during Pegasus hearing