New Delhi: Hours after reports surfaced about WhatsApp saying that an Israeli surveillance firm NSO Group was behind the spyware technology named Pegasus that helped the spies of unnamed entities hack into the phones of Indian journalists and human rights activists, the Congress on Thursday alleged that the situation is appalling but not surprising as the Modi government has been ‘caught snooping.’ Congress’s chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala also went on to say that the Supreme Court must take immediate cognisance and issue notice to the BJP government. Also Read - Israeli Surveillance Firm Spied Upon Indian Journalists & Human Rights Activists, Confirms WhatsApp

“Modi Govt caught snooping! Appalling but not Surprising! After all, BJP Govt- 1. Fought against our right to privacy. 2. Set up a multi crore Surveillance Structure until stopped by SC. SC must take immediate cognisance and issue a notice to BJP government,” Congress’s chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said in a tweet. Also Read - WhatsApp: NSO Group used state-of-art Pegasus spyware to target Indian Journalists, and more

“A government that spies on journalists/activists/Opposition leaders and treats its own citizens like criminals has lost the right to lead in our democracy. We urge the SC to take suo motu cognizance of these illegal activities and to hold this government to account,” he said in another tweet.

Reports suggest that around 1,400 users were targeted upon by the spies. Investigations have also revealed that the users who were preyed upon span across four continents and were mostly diplomats, political dissidents, journalists and senior government officials.

Taking stock of the sensitive situation, the Facebook-owned company WhatsApp announced its decision to sue the alleged NSO Group.

It must be noted that in the month of May this year, WhatsApp claimed to have to stopped a highly sophisticated cyberattack that exploited its video calling system to send malware to its users.

WhatsApp, which has over 1.5 billion users globally, said in a statement that Indian users were among those contacted by us this week.