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Govt responsible for disruption of Parliament proceedings, must discuss Pegasus issue: Congress | India News

NEW DELHI: The Congress on Friday held the government responsible for disruption of proceedings in Parliament, saying this was happening as it is avoiding a discussion on the Pegasus snooping issue.
Leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge said it is not the opposition but the government that is avoiding Parliament on the matter.
“The government should agree to a discussion on the Pegasus issue as all opposition parties want it. Saving privacy, fundamental rights and democracy is very important in the country and Pegasus is linked to this,” he told reporters.
Claiming that several people had been snooped on, Kharge said the entire opposition feels that the issue is important.
He said in Israel, the government there has raided the NSO company and it has stalled the use of the spyware in all countries. “This means snooping was being done, especially so in our country since 2019,” Kharge said.
Pegasus has been developed by the NSO group.
“No government allows others to snoop on its people, but this was allowed to a Israeli company. Is security of the country safe, when data is going out of the country. That is why we want a full discussion in the House,” the Congress leader said.
“But the government is not ready and is instead accusing us of disrupting Parliament,” he said.
Kharge said proceedings are not being disrupted for the first time and claimed that former opposition leaders Arun Jaitley and Sushma Swaraj had said disruption is also a part of democracy.
“This is being done for democracy and in the favour of the people,” he said.
Citing inflation, rising fuel prices, farmers’ protest against three agri laws and the Rafale deal issue, the Congress leader said that “we know there are so many issues and we want to take up one issue at a time”.
Kharge said all parties met in the morning and in one voice said they have raised the Pegasus snooping allegation and want to have a discussion on it.
“We are fighting unitedly on this issue and we want a discussion. We are involving everyone,” he said.
Kharge said that “the government had telephoned us and we are ready to discuss with all leaders”.
“On Thursday, Leader of the House and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi came to my chamber and wanted the opposition’s support for smooth running of the House,” he said.
Congress leader P Chidambaram asked if the government will give up its “ostrich-like attitude” and agree to the Opposition’s demand for a full discussion.
“Will the government give up its ostrich-like attitude and agree to the Opposition’s demand for a full discussion in Parliament on misuse of Pegasus spyware in India? How long can the government duck and hide and scoot when all that the Opposition wants is a full debate?” Chidambaram said on Twitter.
Congress leader Jairam Ramesh said, “One of the foundational principles of parliamentary demoracy is that while the government has its way the Opposition must have its say.”
“But Modi Sarkar believes in ‘my way or the highway’. That is why Parliament is unable to function,” he said
Both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha have been seen repeated disruptions and have failed to transact any business after opposition uproar in favour of their demand for a discussion on the Pegasus snooping row ever since the Monsoon Session began on July 19.




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