A cyber attack of an unusual kind has been unleashed on unsuspecting MPs in the last few days.
Letters, SMSs, faxes, telephone calls and emails with identical content have come raining down – petitioning the MPs to ensure that the CBI is brought under the ambit of the Lokpal.
The peculiar part of this cyber bombardment is that the letters have apparently been authored by different, but similar sounding names — Vishwanathan India, Bharat India and Deepak India, among others.
“There is something very fishy about the affair. What are the intelligence agencies doing”, railways minister Dinesh Trivedi asked.
In past days, the patience of MPs has mostly been tested by an international advocacy organisation called ‘Avaas – The World in Action’ – which describes itself as an organisation working for the “democratic mission to organise citizens to close the gap between the world we have and the world people want”.
HT sent out a questionnaire to Ricken Patel, the executive director of the organisation. Patel responded by saying that since he was on leave, the newspaper might contact Jamie. Mails to Jamie bounced back.
However, Avaas volunteer Shivendra Singh Chauhan said there was no irregularity about the ‘send the message’ campaign, where individuals were invited to sign a petition with a sample text – which was being sent to the mailbox of different MPs.
Launched in 2007, the Avaas strategies include “signing petitions, funding media campaigns and direct actions, emailing, calling and lobbying governments, and organising “offline” protests.
Kerala Congress (M) member Jose K Mani admitted that the he had been receiving mountains of mails, letters and faxes on the Lokpal issue in the past few days.