Rahul again shakes parliament, this time it is 'snoopgate-2'

Congress party rubbishes govt claim that it was a routine profile process

GN Bureau | March 16, 2015


#Congress   #rahul gandhi   #rahul gandhi snoopgate   #parliament  

In parliament on Monday, the Congress party raised what it called ‘Snoopgate-2 , the alleged espionage of its vice president Rahul Gandhi by Delhi police.

On March 12, Delhi police officials visited the residence of Gandhi, who is away on a sabbatical and allegedly asked questions, including the colour of his hair and eyes and what kind of clothes he wears. The government has denied any such attempt and said that it was just a routine profiling process, while the Congress has accused it of snooping on its senior leaders.


ALSO SEE: Is Rahul Gandhi ‘snooping’ row worth debating in parliament?

Rahul Gandhi, who is currently on a leave of absence, is expected to return to Delhi by the end of March.

Senior congress leader and former union health minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said he had not seen such profiling process in his political career so far and why does the Delhi police need to know Gandhi’s shoe size and other personal details. “Is this the sort of spying that this government plans against political opponents?” he asked.

 


Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi had said, "This is Gujarat's model, not India's model... We are not a police state, this is political espionage."

Congress leaders have also argued that why did Delhi police has no role to play Gandhi’s protection is looked after by Special Protection Group (SPG).


In reply to congress’ claim, finance minister Arun Jaitley said that asking for facts is not snooping and the profiling process which was being exercised by the Delhi police was initiated by Congress government led by Rajiv Gandhi in 1987.

An elaborate proforma including education, age, peculiar body marks, company the leader keeps, regular visitors, preferred spots for morning walks etc was created in 1987. This format was updated in 1999 to include several new identification points. Several political leaders including Sonia Gandhi, Pranab Mukherjee, Atal Bihar Vajpayee,  Manmohan Singh have also been profiled under this.

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