If you’re on the phone, someone could be listening. Right now, all they’ll probably get is more wild speculation about the Indian Premier League, the nation’s obsession. But, if true, then the allegations about widespread phone taps by the government’s appendages are potentially far more damaging than anything the Twenty20 tournament could throw up.
The rules on taps, such as they are, are easy to get around for those who know how. Then there’s the technology, which permits those with the right equipment to listen into anything, so long as they’re within range.
With social networking and instant status updates being embraced by the tweeting masses, it may seem that the line between what’s public and what’s private no longer exists. That’s a spurious argument—privacy is a fundamental right that needs to be fiercely safeguarded. The state is habituated to the abuse of power—encroaching on personal space comes naturally to it. It’s up to the rulers to resist the impulse and for the ruled to fight back.