The Center told the Supreme Court on Monday that it does not want to file a detailed affidavit on a batch of petitions seeking an independent investigation into Pegasus’s alleged spy line.
The Center told a court headed by Chief Justice NV Ramana that it has “nothing to hide” and that is why the government has said on its own that it will set up a committee of experts in the domain to investigate these allegations.
Attorney General Tushar Mehta told the court, which also includes Justices Surya Kant and Hima Kohli, that whether or not the government uses a particular software is not a matter for public discussion and making this information part of an affidavit. it will not be available nationally. interest.
Mehta said that the report of the domain expert committee will be presented to the higher court.
The higher court told Mehta that it had already made it clear that it did not want the government to reveal anything that would compromise national security.
The hearing on the matter continues.
On September 7, the higher court had given the Center more time to decide to file a new response to the petitions after Mehta had said that due to some difficulties, he was unable to meet with the officials concerned to make a decision on the presentation of the second. sworn declaration.
The Center had previously filed a limited affidavit in superior court saying that the grounds for seeking an independent investigation into the Pegasus espionage allegations are based on “conjecture and conjecture or other unsubstantiated or material media reports. incomplete or not corroborated “.
He stated that the position on the issue had already been clarified in Parliament by the Minister of Information Technology Ashwini Vaishnaw.
With a view to dispelling any erroneous narratives spread by certain vested interests and examining the issues raised, the government will set up a committee of experts, it had said.
The pleas are related to reports of suspected spies by government agencies on eminent citizens, politicians and scribes through the use of Pegasus spyware from the Israeli company NSO.
An international media consortium has reported that more than 300 verified Indian mobile phone numbers were on the list of possible targets for surveillance using Pegasus spyware.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is automatically generated from a syndicated feed.)