Pegasus snooping row: Supreme Court adjourns hearing to August 16

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday pointed out discussions on social media and websites by petitioners, who are seeking an independent probe into the alleged Pegasus snooping issue. The bench led by Chief Justice NV Ramana noted that the Supreme Court was not against debates, but a case pending before it should be heard here.

The matter has been posted for hearing on August 16 by a three-judge bench that also includes Justices Vineet Saran and Surya Kant.

Today, the Supreme Court referred to that error as it cautioned against “social media debates” over the Pegasus scandal.

A bench headed by Chief Justice N.V. Ramana and comprising Justices Vineet Sarana and Surya Kant told the senior advocates representing various petitioners, “Have some faith in the system, parallel proceedings or parallel debate should not be there on Twitter or social media.”

The bench emphasised that petitioners must have faith in the system and process of adjudication by the court.

The bench said: “There must be some discipline. We asked some questions. There is an adjudication process. Sometimes it may be inconvenient to you. That’s how this process is. Both sides have to face the music”.

The bench added if petitioners want to bring something to our notice, they should file that here. Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, representing journalist N. Ram, said last time there were statements about his client’s statements about the California court. Chief justice said it was taken out of context, but debates must not cross the limits. “If they are using the system, they should have faith in the system”, he reiterated.

The top court stressed that the debate has to be within the courtroom and not outside and the debate should not cross the limits.

Several petitions have been filed in the top court seeking court-monitored probe into the Pegasus snooping allegations.

At the previous hearing, a bench of Chief Justice NV Ramana and Justice Surya Kant had said that if the reports in the newspapers are accurate, allegations of snooping related to Pegasus are serious.

The SC further sought the Centre’s response on petitions including those by the Editors Guild of India and senior journalist N Ram seeking an inquiry into the Israeli spyware issue.

The court heard nine petitions, including those filed by the Editors Guild and senior journalists, seeking an independent investigation into the alleged Pegasus snooping case.

(With inputs from IANS)

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