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Tapping party lines

Everybody who is anybody these days just has to announce that his or her phone lines are being tapped. Having a posse of Z-security gun-toters around you as you walk about town is oh-so passe.

india Updated: Jan 11, 2006 02:15 IST
PTI

Everybody who is anybody these days just has to announce that his or her phone lines are being tapped. Having a posse of Z-security gun-toters around you as you walk about town is oh-so passé. And if you’re really that important a personage, no one wants to kill you any more — a demand to know your secrets is far more indicative of your exalted status. While Amar Singh may have finally got the quantum of attention he always hankered for but never quite got, other once-upon-a-timers are also tumbling over each other to state that they too are being tapped.

L.K. Advani, N. Chandrababu Naidu, H.D. Deve Gowda and Mamata Banerjee are all sure of being under surveillance. So who is keeping tabs on them? The CIA? The aliens who have been planning for world domination for aeons? Richard Nixon? Nope. It’s the Congress that is up to its Gestapo tricks again, says Messrs Singh, Advani, Deve Gowda and Naidu. In Ms Banerjee’s case, of course, it’s the Reds under her Kolkata bed.

As far as urban legends go, the phone tap has always been a classic case where technology has upgraded that old credo of paranoids: walls have ears. And there could well be someone out there hunching over his earphones listening in as you pour out your darkest secrets. But like the impossibility of proving the non-existence of God, it is impossible to prove that someone is not tapping your phone. And in case nobody noticed, Mr Naidu, Mr Deve Gowda, Ms Banerjee — and a horde of others who will surely join Mr Singh on the ‘Yup, I too am being tapped’ campaign — haven’t been in the news of late. So if you feel lonely, unloved and sidelined, just pick up that phone and...

First Published: Jan 11, 2006 02:15 IST