‘Karnataka netas, ex-JNU students, activists picked for possible surveillance’ | India News

‘Karnataka netas, ex-JNU students, activists picked for possible surveillance’ | India News


NEW DELHI: Mobile phone numbers of former Karnataka deputy chief minister G Parameshwara and the personal secretaries of former chief ministers H D Kumaraswamy and Siddaramaiah were alleged to have been selected for possible surveillance ahead of the toppling of the state government in July 2019, a web portal reported on Tuesday.
It also reported that telephone numbers of an anti-caste leader and several prominent activists also figured in the list of numbers which had been allegedly targeted with Israel-based NSO Group’s spyware, said a report on web portal ‘The Wire’.
The report said activists whose phone numbers figure in the leaked records include Ashok Bharti, former JNU students Umar Khalid, Anirban Bhattacharya and Banjyotsna Lahiri, academic and chronicler of life in Naxal-dominated regions Bela Bhatia, railway union leader Shiv Gopal Mishra, Delhi-based labour rights activist Anjani Kumar, anti-coal mining activist Alok Shukla, Delhi University professor Saroj Giri, Bastar-based activist Shubhranshu Choudhary and Bihar-based activist Ipsa Shatakshi.
NSO has questioned the authenticity of the claims on 50,000 phones being targeted and has said that the numbers are not from the cyber security firm’s systems and it has no such master list.
“The records indicate that phone numbers of some of the key political players in Karnataka appear to have been selected around the time when an intense power struggle was taking place between BJP and the JD(S)-Congress-led state government in 2019, after 17 ruling alliance’s legislators …resigned to force a trust vote in the assembly,” the Wire report claimed.
The two new lists are an addition to the second tranche of names that claimed on Monday that Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, former election commissioner Ashok Lavasa and IT minister Ashwini Vaishnawwere allegedly targeted for surveillance





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