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West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee asks PM Modi to call all-party meet on Pegasus spyware row

11:21 PM Jul 27, 2021 | FPJ Bureau

NEW DELHI: The pressure is mounting on the government from all sides to order a probe into Pesagus.

In her first meeting since winning the West Bengal Assembly elections for a third time, West Bengal Chief Minister raised the matter with Prime Minister Modi and told him to convene without delay an all-party meeting on the software being used in India to spy on many, including his own two ministers.

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On this issue, he said, ‘‘He will see’’. PM should call an all-party meeting on the Pegasus issue. There should also be a Supreme Court-monitored probe in this matter,” she told reporters after the meeting.

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Among the meetings lined up by her on Wednesday include those with Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar. She said she has also sought time to meet President Ram Nath Kovind.

Sources said she will be consulting Sonia Gandhi and Pawar if a meeting of all opposition parties can be held when she is in the national capital to plan the strategy for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections. She is in Delhi until Saturday.

Significantly, Mamata drove down to meet senior Congress leaders Kamal Nath and Anand Sharma, before reaching the Prime Minister's House.

She has also tied up a meeting with Congress President Sonia Gandhi for Wednesday evening at the latter's residence at 10 Janpath. Congress sources said Sonia may invite Rahul Gandhi to the meeting since he now handles most of the party's strategies for the elections.

This is the first of her series of meetings with senior political leaders in the national capital to evolve an Opposition consensus to come together on a single forum to challenge the BJP in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

Armed with the detailed analysis of the past two Lok Sabha elections prepared by poll analyst Prashant Kishor, Mamata showed that the BJP will be swept out in a minimum 300 constituencies if the Opposition puts single candidates for one-to-one fight.

Both Kamal Nath and Sharma, whom Mamata met separately, said they discussed the political scenario in the country and congratulated her for her victory in the Assembly elections. Kamal Nath was careful to assert that no strategy was discussed as "that will be discussed by the leader of our party." He said: "We just discussed the current situation and the issue of the rising prices.

Mamata has lined up another meeting with senior Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi in the evening but the Trinamul sources said it was basically to discuss some cases in the courts as Singhvi is among the top most lawyers of the Supreme Court.

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