The Supreme Court on Thursday, October 27, set up an independent expert committee to investigate the use of Pegasus spyware against journalists, opposition politicians, and others, overruling pleas by the government that national security concerns required a veil be placed on the question of surveillance.
Wednesday’s ruling follows revelations made this July by The Wire and its global media partners in the Pegasus Project reports about how the smartphones of over a dozen people were found infected or targeted by spyware. These individuals were part of a larger group of persons whose numbers were figured in a leaked database of probable Pegasus targets around the world.
The committee will be headed by retired Supreme Court judge R.V. Raveendran, who will be assisted by IPS officer Alok Joshi and cyber security expert Sundeep Oberoi. The committee will have Naveen Kumar Chaudhary, Prabaharan P. and Ashwin Anil Gumaste. All three are cyber security and computer science experts.
Arfa Khanum Sherwani discusses the importance of the Supreme Court’s order and with The Wire‘s founding editors Siddharth Varadarajan, M.K. Venu, and lawyer Indira Jaising.