Cong wants JPC to probe ‘security breach’
New Delhi: The Congress Working Committee (CWC), the party’s highest executive body, on Friday stepped up its attack on the chat transcripts between journalist Arnab Goswami and Partho Dasgupta, demanding a joint parliamentary committee probe into what it called a breach of national security.
The transcripts between the editor-in-chief of Republic TV and the ex-CEO of the Broadcast Audience Research Council (Barc) were a part of a Mumbai Police probe into an alleged television ratings scam. The portions of the chat referred by the Congress pertain to the 2019 Pulwama attack and India’s retaliation.
“The CWC demands a timebound investigation by a Joint Parliamentary Committee to enquire into the breach of national security, violations of the Official Secrets Act and the role of the persons involved. Ultimately, those who are guilty of treasonous behaviour must be brought before the law and punished,” the CWC resolution said.
CWC met on Friday to discuss dates for organisational polls, the farm protests and the chat leak. Its resolution, read out to the media by general secretaries Randeep Surjewala and KC Venugopal, said that CWC expresses its “grave concern at recent revelations “ exposing the “sordid conversations that have undoubtedly compromised national security”.
The Congress maintained that people in the “highest echelons of government” were involved in the breach, raising secrecy concerns of “vital and sensitive military operations”.
“The revelations also point to inexcusable and deliberate subversion of government structures, scandalous and extraneous influence over Government policies, and a vicious attack on the independence of the judiciary. The shameful compromise of the Modi Government with non-government players has been exposed,” it said.
In her opening speech, too, Congress president Sonia Gandhi said, “the silence from the government’s side on what has been revealed has been deafening. Those who give certificates of patriotism and nationalism to others now stand totally exposed”.
Reacting to the CWC’s demand, the Republic TV management reiterated their statement on the matter issued on January 19. The statement by Goswami had said, “I am horrified that the Congress party actually thinks that any journalist in India expressing the views publicly stated by the Government is committing a crime...It is beyond absurd to suggest that expecting India to strike back at Pakistan, after the Pulwama attack, was a crime. It was publicly available information and thousands of journalists reported, wrote, broadcast and analysed in the same direction after Pulwama. There are thousands of articles from that time suggesting a hard and tough response from the India Forces.”
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