Owaisi slams the Centre over 'snooping'

Mon 04 Nov 2019, 12:08:51
Hyderabad: On Sunday Owaisi hit at the Centre over the ‘snooping’ controversy and demanded that the government ask Israel how its technology firm listened to WhatsApp conversations of Indians.

Addressing a public meeting here late Saturday, the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen president said the Israeli Ambassador should be summoned and asked about the matter.

“Now it has been learnt that an Israeli company listened to WhatsApp conversations. The Israeli Ambassador should be summoned and asked as to why their company listened to our phones? But, you (government) are not asking the Israeli company, instead you are questioning WhatsApp. Why are you afraid to ask,” Owaisi said.

Facebook-owned WhatsApp on Thursday said Indian journalists and human rights activists were among those globally spied upon by unnamed entities using an Israeli spyware Pegasus, leading to a furore over breach of citizens’ privacy.

WhatsApp said it was suing NSO Group, an Israeli surveillance firm, that is reportedly behind the technology that helped unnamed entities’ spies hack into phones of roughly 1,400 users.

Following the disclosure by WhatsApp, the Indian government has asked the messaging platform to explain the matter and list out the measures that have been taken by it to safeguard the privacy of millions of Indians.

Criticising Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Owaisi said there was need for jobs in the country and there was poverty and rising costs, and alleged that the Prime Minister was neither worried or cared about it. He further attacked Modi government over India ranking 102 in the Global Hunger Index.

India has slipped to 102 position in the Global Hunger Index 2019 of 117 countries, slipping from its 2018 position of 95 and behind its neighbours Nepal, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

“You (Narendra Modi) have been the Prime Minister for five years. You got more than 300 seats (Lok Sabha). We want to ask one question Modiji, how it happened?

Owaisi said those who talk of nationalism should have some shame. “You have brought India to such a situation. Is this your nationalism. Shame on you. Twenty crore people sleep empty stomach daily in our country and you talk big things. BJP and RSS make fun of the poor,” Owaisi alleged.

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