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Ten central agencies allowed to snoop on any computer, Mamata, Congress slam Centre

Ten central agencies allowed to snoop on any computer, Mamata, Congress slam Centre

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 21 Dec 2018, 03:59 pm

New Delhi, Dec 21 (IBNS): Top opposition leaders, including the Congress, have criticised the Centre after the Narendra Modi-led government allowed ten central agencies to intercept, monitor and decrypt “any information generated, transmitted, received or stored in any computer”.

Congress leader Randeep Singh Surjewala said the move was targeting the 'Right to Privacy' of Indian citizens.

"अबकी बार,निजता पर वार! Modi Govt mocks & flouts Fundamental ‘Right to Privacy’ with brazen impunity! Having lost elections,now Modi Govt wants to scan/snoop YOUR computers? ‘Big Brother Syndrome’ is truly embedded in NDA’s DNA! जनता की जासूसी=मोदी सरकार की निन्दनीय प्रवृत्ति!," he tweeted.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee also slammed the Centre and posted: "Isn’t this dangerous?."

"I have come to know that Union Home Ministry has issued an order yesterday authorising 10 Central Agencies to carry out interception, monitoring and decryption of any information generated, transmitted, received or stored in any computer resource," she said.

Mamata further posted: " If it is for National Security, then only for that purpose Central Government already has the machinery. But, why all commoners will be affected?Public Opinion please."

Ten central agencies, including the NIA and CBI, can now intercept, monitor and decrypt “any information generated, transmitted, received or stored in any computer”, media reports said.

An order to the effect was issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs on December 20. The 10 agencies with the freedom to peek into any computer are the Intelligence Bureau, Narcotics Control Bureau, Enforcement Directorate, Central Board of Direct Taxes, Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, Central Bureau of Investigation, National Investigation Agency, Cabinet Secretariat (R&AW), Directorate of Signal Intelligence (For service areas of Jammu & Kashmir, North-East and Assam only) and Commissioner of Police, Delhi.

According to the order, the subscriber or service provider or any person in charge of the computer resource will be bound to extend all facilities and technical assistance to the agencies and failing to do will invite seven-year imprisonment and fine.

The MHA gave the authorisation under 69 (1) of the Information Technology Act, 2000 which says that the central government can direct any agency after it is satisfied that it is necessary or expedient to do so in the “interest of the sovereignty or integrity of India, defence of India, security of the state, friendly relations with foreign states or public order or for preventing incitement to the commission of any cognizable offence relating to above or for investigation of any offence.”

The government has stated that this was done as there was "essentially an anomaly in law."

Ten central agencies allowed to snoop on any computer, Mamata, Congress slam Centre

India Blooms News Service
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