New Delhi: Despite objections from the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Congress MP Shashi Tharoor has been retained as the head of the Parliamentary Committee on Information Technology.
News agency ANI reported this development as Tharoor’s chairmanship of the previous standing committee had been repeatedly criticized by BJP MP Nishikant Dubey.
The tenure of the previous committees had ended earlier on September 12.
Earlier in July, the BJP MP had moved a “privilege notice” in the Lok Sabha Speaker’s office against Tharoor for allegedly misusing his power as the head of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information and Technology, reported The Indian Express earlier.
The panel on Information Technology, which was expected to discuss the Pegasus spyware issue, had called the officials of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), Ministry of Home Affairs, and Department of Telecommunication on the subject ‘Citizens’ Data Security and Privacy’.
The meeting, however, could not take place as 10 BJP members present did not sign the attendance register and hence ensured lack of quorum.
Tharoor had told the media earlier that the BJP MP’s motion has no “validity” as no constituted procedure was followed in introducing the motion, which requires the Speaker to get the leave of the House before it can be introduced.
The MP from Godda, Jharkhand, had in a separate letter written to Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, Dubey alleged that Tharoor violated rules of the committee as “he has become a harbinger of all vicious activities”.
The BJP MP had moved a notice for breach of privilege against the committee chairman following the legal notice from Tharoor, the MP from Thiruvananthapuram, to Facebook asking it to appear before the IT panel.