Amid a raging political controversy over the Pegasus phone hacking expose, the Congress today said the National Security Council Secretariat had seen a tenfold increase in its budgetary allocation in 2017-18 and asked whether the budgetary grant increased to purchase Pegasus spyware.
The Congress said the budgetary allocation for NSCS was Rs 17.43 crore in 2011-12 when the UPA government was in power. It went up to Rs 20.33 crores in the next financial year and was further increased to Rs 26.06 crores in 2013-14.
The Government changed in 2014 and the BJP came to power.
In 2014-15, the Congress said, the BJP government increased the allocation to Rs 44.46 crores, which came down to Rs 33 crores in 2016-17.
“But in 2017-18, a new sub-head was created under the National Security Council Secretariat which is called the Cyber Security Research and Development. And the Budget shockingly was increased from Rs 33 crores to Rs 333 crores. Was this money used to buy Pegasus software…,” Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera asked.
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