India bought Pegasus as part of defence deal with Israel in 2017
The Indian government bought Israeli spyware Pegasus in 2017 as part of a $2-billion package for weapons including a missile system, The New York Times reported Friday.
The report details how the spyware was used globally, by Mexico to target journalists and dissidents, and by Saudi Arabia against women’s rights activists and associates of columnist Jamal Khashoggi who was killed by Saudi operatives. It says that under a set of new deals licensed by the Israeli Ministry of Defence, Pegasus was provided to Poland, Hungary and India, and other countries.
A global consortium of media groups had revealed in July 2021 that the spyware had been used by several governments around the world to snoop on opponents, journalists, businessmen etc.
In an interaction with The Indian Express at Idea Exchange, Israel’s Ambassador to India Naor Gilon, that NSO is a “private Israeli company, which developed a tool for countering terrorism and probably saved lives