Parliament Monsoon Session Highlights: IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said in the Lok Sabha on Monday that the ‘Pegasus Project’ was an attempt to malign our democracy and its well-established institutions. He also said any form of illegal surveillance is not possible in India. “A highly sensational story was published by a web portal last night. Many over-the-top allegations made around this story. The press reports appeared a day before the Monsoon Session of Parliament. This can’t be a coincidence…In the past, similar claims were made regarding the use of Pegasus on WhatsApp. Those reports had no factual basis and were denied by all parties. Press reports of 18 July 2021 also appear to be an attempt to malign Indian democracy and its well-established institutions.” he said.
He added, “Requests for lawful interceptions of electronic communication are made as per relevant rules under provisions of Sec 5(2) of Indian Telegraph Act, 1885 & Section 69 of Information Technology Act 2000. Each case of interception is approved by the competent authority. Any form of illegal surveillance isn’t possible with checks and balances in our laws and robust institutions. In India, there’s a well-established procedure through which lawful interception of electronic communication is carried out for purpose of national security.”
Both Houses have been adjourned till 11 am on Tuesday.
Earlier in the day, both the Houses of the Parliament had been adjourned following protests by the Opposition parties. The uproar happened when Prime Minister Modi was introducing the new ministers. Raising an objection to this, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said, “Congress’s behaviour in Lok Sabha is sad, unfortunate and unhealthy.”
Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, while marking the beginning of the Monsoon Session on Monday, said he hoped that all issues will be discussed in a healthy manner in the Parliament. “I hope every issue related to the pandemic and our fight against it would be discussed. I would like all floor leaders to attend a session at 4 pm tomorrow to have a presentation on the pandemic situation. It can be discussed on the floor of the House too,” he added