By FnF Correspondent | PUBLISHED: 13, Sep 2021, 18:11 pm IST | UPDATED: 14, Sep 2021, 19:22 pm IST
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday reserved the interim order in the Pegasus snoopgate row after the centre refused to file a detailed affidavit on the issue, reported Live Law.
According to the Live Law report, the Chief Justice of India NV Ramana said that it might take 2-3 days to pass the order.
The government clarified that it would not file a detailed affidavit in response to multiple pleas seeking an independent probe into the Pegasus spyware scandal, news agency PTI reported.
Stating there is nothing to hide, the Centre said it’s the reason why it will constitute a panel of domain experts.
“Report of Committee of domain experts will be made available to SC," Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told the apex court. He added that such issues of whether the centre was using Pegasus or not can be debated in affidavits and can be looked into by domain experts. "Section 69 does provide interceptions by which terror funding and terror links etc have been unearthed," Mehta said.
Mehta said that the position on the issue has already been clarified in Parliament by Information Technology Minister Ashwini Vaishnav, according to the PTI report.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court on Monday reserved interim orders on the petitions. Chief Justice of India NV Ramana, according to Liva Law said, “We are reserving and will pass an interim order. It might take two three days to pass the orders.”
The government had been instructed to file the affidavit by the Supreme Court and had twice taken time to submit its response. Tushar Mehta said that due to some difficulties he could not meet the officials concerned to take a decision on the filing of the second affidavit.
On August 17, the Supreme Court bench issued notice to the Centre related to a batch of petitions seeking a probe into the Pegasus snooping controversy.
A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice N V Ramana had on September 7 had granted more time to the Centre to decide on filing a further response on the petitions. The top court made it clear that it did not want the government to disclose anything which compromises national security.
On September 7, the hearing was adjourned to September 13 after the government sought time after the petitioners highlighted that the "limited affidavit" filed by the Centre has dodged the question of whether the government or its agencies have ever used Pegasus.
An international media consortium has reported that over 300 verified Indian mobile phone numbers were on the list of potential targets for surveillance using Pegasus spyware.
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