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ISIS module crackdown: Arun Jaitley hails NIA, defends MHA’s ‘snooping’ order

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New Delhi, Dec 27: Union Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday hailed the National Investigation Agency (NIA) for busting an alleged Islamic State terror plot in New Delhi and Uttar Pradesh and questioned the Opposition, who has been demanding the withdrawal of a recent Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) notification authorising investigative agencies to intercept, monitor and decrypt information stored in any computer.

Arun Jaitley

In a series of tweets on Thursday, Jaitley congratulated the NIA for cracking the dangerous terrorist module and later hit out at the Opposition parties in the light of the accusations of 'snooping' made on the Modi government, after the Ministry of Home Affairs gave ten central agencies the power to 'intercept and monitor' information on computer devices.

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Lashing out at the Opposition, Finance Minister later posted multiple questions asking 'would this crackdown be possible without the interception of electronic communication':

Further adding that 'national security and sovereignty are paramount' in his next tweet, Jaitley said that life and personal liberty will only survive in a strong democratic nation and not in a terrorist dominated state.

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On Wednesday, 10 people were arrested by the NIA after intense raids were conducted in their houses in 17 locations across the two states for allegedly being part of a module of the IS. The NIA said the group - self-appointed and financed - was in an "advanced stage of carrying out a series of blasts" across the country and had "vital installations and important personalities, including politicians" on their target.

The Congress and other opposition parties have attacked the government's order empowering 10 agencies to intercept and monitor data in computers and even seize devices.

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