PM Modi should address nation on Pegasus issue: Gehlot

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Ashok Gehlot | Photo: PTI

Jaipur: Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Sunday demanded Prime Minister Narendra Modi address the nation on the Pegasus issue to end any confusion on the matter.

After paying tributes to Mahatma Gandhi at the secretariat here on Shaheed Diwas, the chief minister said those who follow the ideology of the man who assassinated the Father of the Nation are ruling the country and are entering the parliament as MPs.

Reacting to a media report claiming that India bought the Pegasus spyware from Israel as part of a defence deal in 2017, the Congress leader said, "The Central government should give a clarification. If the government is clean, then the PM should himself address the nation."

"The Supreme Court is not able to do hearings on the matter on priority, which it should have done. Who should be blamed?" he said.

Gehlot said that Richard Nixon had to resign as US president in a matter of spying.

He also alleged there is such an environment in the country that anyone who expresses disagreement with the ruling dispensation is targeted, and the CBI, Enforcement Directorate go after them.

He also alleged that the RSS and BJP have created a "troll army" across the country to attack people on social media for writing anything which is against their ideology.

"You write anything on social media, the troll army of RSS and BJP, which is given lakhs and crores of rupees, comes to attack. In a democracy, disagreement and criticism are welcomed but today if you criticise, you are declared anti-national. In what direction the county is moving? This should be a matter of concern for every citizen," he said.

Gehlot said that almost 98 per cent of the country's current population comprise those born after independence and it is necessary to take the ideology of Mahatma Gandhi to the new generation.

On the issue of the Rajasthan Eligibility Examination for Teachers (REET) paper leak, the chief minister said the state government took prompt action and handed over the investigation to the SOG, which has conducted a thorough probe.

Apparently ruling out the possibility of a CBI inquiry in the paper leak case, as demanded by the Opposition BJP, Gehlot said BJP leaders should give suggestions to the state government to improve the system instead of "playing with the future of the youths".

He also claimed that today such people are in the BJP "who have no understanding of politics and give statements without thinking".

"They should do some brainstorming before speaking. Because of them, lakhs of students are getting demoralised. After inflation, unemployment is a major issue. The state government has taken steps to improve the system," he said.

Gehlot said the chairman of the Rajasthan Board of Secondary Education, Ajmer, D P Jaroli was sacked and secretary and other officials were suspended in connection with the paper leak, and action will be taken against all those whose names come during the course of investigation.

Jaroli was sacked and the board secretary Arvind Kumar and two others were suspended by the state government on Saturday in connection with the paper leak of REET-2021 which took place in September last year.

The board had conducted the exam to recruit teachers. PTI

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