16:49 GMT08 April 2020
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): In 2013, India implemented stricter guidelines on accessing call data records (CDR) after cases of unauthorised access to classified data by politicians came to light. The revised rules only allow security officials from a certain level to get the CDR of specific individuals for investigative purposes.

    On Wednesday, NDTV reported, citing top telecom officials who wished to remain anonymous, that network operators in India were against the federal government’s demand for Call Data Records (CDR) of customers from major circles in Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Delhi, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, and Andhra Pradesh.

    Some of the circles like the national capital fall under the VVIP zone where call records would provide information about national politicians and leaders.

    According to unidentified officials, the government has an ulterior motive under the banner of privacy concerns, the reports said. The authorities have, however, yet to comment on these claims.

    Congress leader Manish Tewari who was Minister of Information and Broadcasting under former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh, shared the news on his Twitter and called the government’s demand “scandalous”.

    ​Incidentally, except for Himachal Pradesh, all other states from where call records were being sought have governments led by opposition parties.

    Several others have also reacted to the news on social networking platforms accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah of wanting to spy on residents of the states where the Bharatiya Janata Party is not in power. 

    ​Earlier in February, the Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) - an umbrella organisation of mobile telecom service providers in India reached out to the federal Telecom Department, about seeking the confidential information of residents of so many states. But the department failed to state any specific reason or purpose for the demand, which is a violation of the country's privacy laws.


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    telecom, government, Bharatiya Janata party (BJP), Narendra Modi, India
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