Shimla: Cornered over serious violation of privacy in unauthorized phone tapping of individuals, government servants, politicians and journalists, former chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal has asked for judicial probe and if any misuse was established the guilty needed to be punished.
Defending the government during his term having given permission to purchase phone snooping equipments, Dhumal in a statement said that funds are allocated for purchase for sensitive devices to for containing smuggling and anti social elements.
But if these devices by anybody have been used illegally, then action against such individual should be taken, said Dhumal.
Instead of getting to the bottom of the issue, the government appears to be more intent upon drawing political mileage over the phone tapping matter, says the opposition leader.
Isolated over the misuse of powers by the police, the former chief minister also finds himself isolated in the party for phones of both friends and opponents were being spied upon.
Speaking about the sensitive equipment bought, chief secretary Sudripto Roy said “under the police modernization program new equipments are bought after a demand is put forward by the police headquarters.”
He added that in the purchase order placed before the government under the police modernization program, funding for which is provided by the central government, he did not recall if there was any phone snooping devices on the police shopping lists.
The government was conducting a thorough enquiry and would not hesitate to lodge an FIR in the case.
Meanwhile the phone service providers, whose connivance in the unauthorized recording of conversations is figuring in the investigation being carried out are increasingly being considered party to the criminal breach of privacy.