Friday , 18 January 2019

Congress says SC put ‘stamp’ on its reservations over social media hub issue

NEW DELHI: The Congress Saturday claimed that the Supreme Court had “put a stamp” on its reservations over the government’s move to create a social media hub, a day after the apex court asked the Centre whether it wants to tap citizens’ WhatsApp messages as it will be like “becoming a surveillance state”.

Congress’s communications in-charge Randeep Surjewala said in a tweet that on June 1 the Congress had raised the “serious issue” of

the Modi government acting as a ‘surveillance state’ by setting up a ‘Social Media Communication Hub’ that “will be a tool by BJP to snoop on citizens”.

“July 13: SC puts a stamp on our reservations,” he said on Twitter.

Surjewala also tagged a statement issued by Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi on June 1 in which he had accused the Modi government of trying to invade the privacy of every individual in the country by creating a social media hub.

“Does the government want to tap its citizens’ WhatsApp messages? It will be like creating a surveillance state,” the apex court bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud had said while hearing a PIL filed by a Trinamool Congress legislator from West Bengal.

The bench sought the Centre’s response on the plea by TMC MLA Mahua Moitra and also asked for Attorney General K K Venugopal’s assistance in the matter.

In May this year, the Broadcast Engineering Consultants India Limited (BECIL), a Public Sector Undertaking under the Information and Broadcasting Ministry, had floated a tender to supply a software for the project.

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