Sting tape: AAP illegally recorded phone conversation, breached trust, says journalist

New Delhi: The Aam Aadmi Party has committed a serious breach of trust by “illegally” recording a telephone conversation of a journalist without her permission and using it as evidence to settle intra-party disputes, said Chandra Suta Dogra, the reporter involved in the matter.

 Sting tape: AAP illegally recorded phone conversation, breached trust, says journalist

The sting tape by AAP was used to target Yogendra Yadav. PTI

Dogra, who was working with The Hindu at that time and is now with The Indian Express, was invited by Yadav along with two other journalists over breakfast at the home of a Chandigarh-based AAP office-bearer from Haryana, Rajiv Goadara, on 15 August, 2014.

She used some off the record “inputs” on how AAP’s workers in Haryana voted in favour of contesting Haryana polls in one of op-ed articles titled ‘Fading promise of the Indian spring’ published in the The Hindu on 29 August, 2014. She even used the break-up of voting that took place in the National Executive (NE) to decide whether the party should go to polls or not.

“The day the article appeared in the newspaper, I got a call from (Arvind) Kejriwal’s office in Delhi. Identifying himself as Bibhav (who is now personal secretary to the Delhi chief minister), the caller told me that the facts written about the NE meeting was not correct. I responded that the facts were shared by Mr Yadav and therefore, there was no reason for her to doubt the version,” she told Firstpost, adding that the “caller recorded the conversation without my permission." The audio clip is being used months after the publication of the piece.

Asked why she used off the record inputs – which was not supposed to be published - and why she revealed the identity of her source, she replied, “I could not see any element of confidentiality in the meeting as it was attended by several AAP workers and four other journalists. The meeting was attended by nine persons, including me. Since he was AAP's chief spokesperson, I thought that the party was aware of everything.”

“The recording of my conversion without bringing to my notice was illegal and completely unethical. Such acts do not suit a party which claims to have high moral standards. The unfortunate part is that it was first used to substantiate the party’s internal conspiracy and when it served their vested interests, it was made public,” she added condemning the act.

"By making the audio clip public with an aim to defame Yadav only, the AAP has shaken our faith in its leaders and the party. How can we trust that our conversation is not being recorded when we make a call to its leaders and sources in the party?" said some journalists covering the AAP.

Updated Date: Mar 04, 2015 15:31:14 IST