Other States

Phone tapping issue resurfaces in Rajasthan

Ashok Gehlot  

 Phone tapping charges have come back to haunt the Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot led government in Rajasthan, with Congress MLA Ved Prakash Solanki alleging that some legislators have talked about their phones being tapped.

Without naming any MLA who levelled the phone tapping charge, Mr. Solanki, a staunch supporter of Congress leader Sachin Pilot, said the legislators also fear of being trapped by various agencies. "I do not know if my phone is being tapped or not. Some legislators have told me that their phones are being tapped. I am also not aware if the State government is involved in phone tapping. Many officials told them (legislators) that it seems that there are efforts underway to trap them," Mr. Solanki, a legislator from Chaksu assembly constituency, told reporters on Saturday.

"Some of these MLAs have also informed the chief minister of the matter," he said. Mr. Solanki said he does not know whether the MLAs have technical knowledge or there is some app through which they come to know that their phones are being tapped.

Reacting to the remarks, BJP state president Satish Poonia charged that the Congress is intimidating its MLAs.

“Today again a Congress MLA is saying that many MLAs say their phones are being tapped and spying is happening. Congress should tell who these MLAs are? The Congress is intimidating its own MLAs," Mr. Poonia tweeted.

In a tweet, Deputy Leader of Opposition Rajendra Rathore charged that the State government was once again trying to intimidate public representatives. In July last year, Mr. Pilot and 18 Congress legislators had rebelled against chief minister Gehlot. One of the accusations they levelled was about illegal phone tapping. The charges gained ground when some audio clips of telephonic conversations were shared by Mr. Gehlot’s officer on special duty (OSD) Lokesh Sharma.

The audio clips were later handed over to Rajasthan Police’s special operations group (SOG) to investigate charges that some legislators were trying to topple an elected government through horse trading.

The SOG ultimately closed the case after the Congress high command intervened to resolve the issues between Mr. Gehlot and Mr. Pilot.


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Printable version | Aug 5, 2021 6:11:16 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/phone-tapping-issue-resurfaces-in-rajasthan/article34804323.ece

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