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Gujarat snooping case: Signs of a fascist leader in the making?

Is Narendra Modi, BJP's prime ministerial candidate the man who is referred to as the 'Sahib' in the tapes that are currently in the public domain, courtesy gulail.com and Cobrapost.com? Questions like these are flying thick and fast in a highly charged poll season as the Congress is quickly trying to corner the BJP over the tapes that have allegedly revealed Amit Shah ordering 24X7 surveillance of a girl on the orders of a 'Sahib'.

Speaking to CNN-IBN, CSDS professor and editor of Manushi, Madhu Kishwar said that the surveillance was necessary because the family had requested the government to protect the girl from the influence of Kuldeep Sharma and Pradeep Sharma. Kishwar said, "Pradeep Sharma was misusing his position..and did the girl ever come up and said that I was being illegally tracked?

 Gujarat snooping case: Signs of a fascist leader in the making?

Amit Shah - the man allegedly behind the tapes. AP

She also said that the Congress' vilification campaign was threatening the security of the girl. Not just that, Kishwar also went to the extent of saying that the Anti-Terrorism Squad may have been used because Pradeep Sharma (who was already charged in a land scam) could have had terrorist links as well.

However, some key questions still remain unanswered - a few of which were posed by Congress spokesperson Jayanthi Natarajan on the show. She asked, "Why is the Gujarat government using the ATS and the resources of the state to track a girl? How is it then that there is a statement from the girl's father that was circulated by the BJP? And finally are there written orders that there be a surveillance on the girl?"

It is important to note that under the Telegraph Act, the state cannot engage in phone tapping unless there are express written orders from the home ministry - something that the calls on the tapes do not seem to have.

However, the concern is that this exposition will degenerate into a mud slinging march between the Congress and the BJP, said AAP member Prashant Bhushan. According to Bhushan, this issue is between the people of the country, the state of affairs in Gujarat and the prime ministerial hopeful of BJP.

"The state of Gujarat is completely a fascist state in operation and the people of this country have a right to know that," he said.

"Any single person will not be in doubt that the girl's parents phones are tapped. Amit Shah makes 15-20 calls a minute to find out the whereabouts of this girl," Bhushan said. There has been a clear misuse and abuse of police machinery for personal ends and clear violation of The Telegraph Act, because so many phones were tapped, he added.

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Updated Date: Nov 19, 2013 08:30:16 IST