UPA government tapped phones, alleges Outlook

New Delhi : The Congress-led UPA government was tapping the telephone conversations of important political leaders, including Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, Congress leader Digvijay Singh, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and CPI-M leader Prakash Karat, newsmagazine Outlook has claimed.

In a report in its recent edition, the Outlook says that the phones of important political leaders were tapped to seek confidential information.

The weekly claims that Pawar’s conversation with IPL commissioner Lalit Modi was tapped last fortnight over the ongoing controversy in the cash-rich Indian Premier League, which revealed inside details of the bidding process of various franchises.

The magazine said the government tapped Digvijay Singh’s phone in February 2007 during the Punjab polls while the Bihar chief minister’s phone was tapped in October 2007 when he was in New Delhi to seek central funds after the Kosi river breached its banks.

Prakash Karat’s phone was tapped in June 2008 to get information about the opposition’s mood over the Indo-US nuclear deal, the magazine claimed.

Reacting to the Outlook report, Karat termed the phone tapping by the government as “illegal and intolerable” and sought punitive action against those responsible for it.

“The UPA government is resorting to tapping of phones of political leaders which is illegal and intolerable. The government has to own up responsibility and take action against those responsible,” said Karat.

He said safeguards should be taken against such misuse of security agencies.

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