Shimla, Feb 24
The leader of Congress party Mukesh Agnihotri alleged the Jai Ram Government, for breach of privacy of Cong MLAs as it indulged in illegal surveillance of Congress and Opposition Members. Soon after the question hour on the 2nd day of the Budget Session LOP raised this issue through a point of order that Jai Ram Govt is indulged in the surveillance as a message has been floated to all PSOs of MLAs on behalf of some senior police officer to routinely inform about the location of MLAs without informing MLA with whom he or she is posted.
”We have intercepted this message from the mobile phone of one of PSOs and it shows that the government is trying to use PSO of MLAs as the source of surveillance to intrude in their privacy which is highly condemnable.” he disclosed in the house.
Agnihotri also said that party MLA Satpal Raijada did not have a PSO of State police with him put under the radar of surveillance by engaging local police jawans by keeping on CID payroll. LoP also stated in the house that since Jai Ram Thakur Government has no access to the spying software Pegasus it is relying upon the MLA’S PSO to turn them into Pegasus.
Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur said that no such order was issued on behalf of his government and if any officer had passed such a message or order to MLA’s PSOs, action would be taken soon. He said that information being sent by the PSOs of MLAs related to ensure their security and public order. He said that black flags are being shown to MLAs some time and they may be in an untoward situation while moving out from the state borders, their information being sought to deploy the additional force some time. CM said that intention of coordination between the local police and PSOs is not to indulge in the surveillance of MLAs but to ensure their security or cope with the untoward incidents.
CM stated that the Government could directly contact the MLAs to know about their movement as it is not difficult in the time of information technology to be contacted through whatsapp etc. ” Since LOP has informed the house about some message of surveillance which itself shows that their PSOs are much loyal towards the respected MLAs whom they have been posted with” CM argued.
Chief minister said that issue raised by the Leader of Opposition is related to the institutions of legislatures and Government did not want to breach their privacy however it could not be denied that PSO themselves informed the police headquarters about the location of MLAs as security and sanctity of MLAs is utmost important to government as well as state police.
Satpal Raijada informed the house that he did not accept the PSO deputed by the police with him as the person of his choice had not been deployed. He demanded to post PSO of MLA’s choice and order should be issued by the state home department with this regard.