KOLKATA, Feb 15 (IANS) - The government should give an "authoritative clarification" on media reports that 100,000 phones are being tapped per year, which is a matter of concern, senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley said here Tuesday.
"Media reports today (Tuesday) have indicated that around 1 lakh telephone connections are being tapped. The law is very clear that tapping of phones can only be done when national security is the consideration or there is prevention of crime involved," Jaitley told mediapersons.
"The figure is so large that it is frightening. It is a matter of concern. Simultaneously this power is also excised by the states and therefore the figure may be bigger," he added.
A report in a leading national daily Tuesday said that more than 100,000 phones are being tapped by the government every year.
"Naturally then there is an apprehension this is a misuse of power that is taking place and indiscriminate bugging is going on," said Jaitely, the leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha.
"It is extremely important that the government of India clarify on how many of these phones are really being bugged across the country and authoritatively clarify that phones are being tapped only on those consideration with are permitted by law and not otherwise," he added.