The Rajasthan police have filed a case against the media manager of Sachin Pilot and a television journalist in connection with news reports that had alleged that the state government had tapped the phones of MLAs who were loyal to the Congress leader during the face-off with Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot two months ago.
The police have filed FIR against Lokendra Singh, Pilot’s media manager, and Sharat Kumar, a journalist working for Hindi news channel Aaj Tak who is based in Jaipur, under various sections of the IPC for “circulating rumours”, “promoting enmity” and for criminal conspiracy. They have also been charged under the IT Act, The Indian Express reported.
Pilot had rebelled against the way Gehlot functioned as the chief minister and had taken those supporting him to Hotel Suryagarh in Jaisalmer to keep the flock together. His loyalists had on August 7 accused the government of tapping their phones and recording their conversations with the help of some police officers. The police had, however, denied that their officers were involved in any phone-tapping.
The FIR comes two months after the incident. It has been filed at the Vidhayak Puri police station in Jaipur. The SHO of the police station, Om Prakash Matwa, is heading the investigations.
The police have asked Singh to appear before them for questioning with devices such as laptops and mobile phone that were used to communicate during the stay at the hotel.
Aaj Tak’s Kumar has also been summoned. He said all the channels had carried news of the alleged phone-tapping. “All news channels ran the story from morning till evening. Why is one channel being singled out?,” he said, according to The Indian Express.