Free Press Journal

Modi govt likely to review decision on ‘Snoopgate’: Rijiju


New Delhi: Describing the previous UPA government’s move to order a probe into the ‘Snoopgate’ affair as being politically motivated, newly-appointed Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju today indicated that the decision may be reviewed by the NDA government.

“It is clearly visible that the decision was politically motivated,” he told PTI when asked about UPA government’s decision to order a probe into the surveillance of a woman in Gujarat in 2009.

The 42-year-old BJP MP from Arunachal West constituency said that the decision to order a probe into any case needs to be based on merit and has to be without any bias.

“Rule of law has to be established. There should not be any politically-motivated move,” he said when asked whether the decision would be reviewed by the Narendra Modi government.

The Manmohan Singh government had on December 26, 2013, decided to set up a Judicial Commission of Inquiry to probe the charges of surveillance of a woman, triggering a political row with the “snoopgate” affair alleged to have involved Modi when he was the Gujarat Chief Minister Modi.

The government had announced that the commission, to be headed by a retired Supreme Court judge or a retired chief justice of a high court, would also look into charges of snooping on Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh by the previous BJP government when he was in the opposition as well as the leaking of the call data records of Arun Jaitley in Delhi.

The Union Cabinet had taken its decision on the probe under the Commissions of Inquiry Act, which the Gujarat government, too, had used to set up a similar panel.

Reports suggested that as no retired judge was willing to head the probe commission, the UPA government had to abandon the plan to appoint its head days before the Lok Sabha election results were announce.