‘Priyanka Gandhi’s phone suspected to be hacked via WhatsApp,’ says Congress

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NEW DELHI: The Congress on Sunday claimed that senior party leader Priyanka Gandhi had received a message from WhatsApp informing her that her phone was suspected to have been hacked.

The party, however, did not say exactly when Gandhi received the message.

“I want to tell that Priyanka Gandhi also received a similar message from WhatsApp around the same time when WhatsApp was sending similar messages to those whose phones were allegedly hacked,” Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said.

This is the first time that any prominent politician has claimed of being targeted by the suspicious malware after the controversy broke out.

Terming BJP as ‘Jasoos’ party, Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surajewala accused the ruling party of being ‘fully aware’ of snooping.

WhatsApp had informed the Indian government in September that 121 Indian users were targeted by the Israeli spyware Pegasus, but IT ministry has contended that the information received from the messaging app earlier was inadequate and incomplete, according to sources.

“The illegal spyware ‘Pegasus’ was used to hack cell phones in the run-up to the 2019 General Elections… BJP Government was fully aware of the same. Despite repeated reminders from Facebook, the Government did not act,” Surjewala said.

The Congress, in a full-frontal attack, alleged, the spyware ‘Pegasus’ was used to hack and spy upon politicians, journalists, lawyers, civil society groups and human rights defenders.

“BJP Government is the deployer and executor of this illegal and unconstitutional snooping and spying racket. The new acronym for BJP is – ‘Bhartiya Jasoos Party’, he claimed.

“The layers of BJP Government’s conspiracy and collusion in the illegal and unconstitutional hacking of cell phones through surveillance software ‘Pegasus’ are unravelling every day. ‘Rule of Law’ and fundamental ‘Right to Privacy’ has become a joke for the Modi Government,’ asserted Surjewala.

The Congress alleged these rights are being “trampled upon and trashed” by the ruling Government.

Meanwhile, on Saturday, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee demanded a probe by the Centre into the “snooping” on activists, journalists and politicians, alleging that the Union government was “fully aware” of the security breach on messaging platform WhatsApp.

Source: Press Trust of India