Three mobile phone numbers belonging to the Supreme Court staffer, who accused former Chief Justice of India (CJI), Ranjan Gogoi of sexual harassment, were selected as potential targets for surveillance using Pegasus software, The Wire reported.
As per the report, eight other phone numbers involving the SC staffer’s family members were also marked as targets for surveillance when the allegations of sexual misconduct against CJI Gogoi surfaced in April 2019.
Israel-based spyware firm NSO is best known for its Pegasus spyware, which it claims is sold only to “vetted governments” and not to private entities, though the company does not reveal which governments it sells the controversial product to.
The report further said that in response to a detailed query sent to the Prime Ministers’ Office by members of the Pegasus Project, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEITY) described the allegation of an association “between the Government of India and Pegasus” as “malicious”.
“The allegations regarding government surveillance on specific people has no concrete basis or truth associated with it whatsoever,” it added.
The Supreme Court staffer was dismissed from service in December 2018, weeks after she allegedly rebuffed the judge’s advances.