"It is the Congress dirty tricks department, which is behind the move to appoint the judge at the fag-end of the government's tenure," he said at a press conference here.

Shah alleged that Manmohan Singh dispensation has no "constitutional and moral authority" to appoint a judge to probe the snooping allegations "as the government is going".

The illegal surveillance on a woman in Gujarat in 2009 was allegedly done at the behest of Chief Minister Narendra Modi and Shah was the Home Minister of the state during that period.

There have been allegations that Shah himself was in regular touch with the officials involved in the alleged snooping. Gujarat government has maintained that not only the father of the woman in question but she herself was also aware that state agencies were tracking her and was "thankful" for it.

"The moral authority of the UPA government has ended. It has no constitutional authority either. Still, if they are doing this, they do not know why their government is going," Shah said.

Yesterday, the government had said a judicial commission to probe 'snoopgate' allegedly involving Modi will be in place before the Lok Sabha poll process comes to an end on May 16.

The government had decided four months back to set up the inquiry commission but the process got delayed reportedly because of its inability to find a judge, who was ready to take the task.

The government had announced that the Commission, to be headed by a retired Supreme Court judge or a retired Chief Justice of a high court, will also look into charges of snooping on Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh by the previous BJP government when he was in the opposition as well as the leaking of the call data records (CDR) of Jaitley in Delhi.

The Union Cabinet on December 26, 2013 took the decision under the Commissions of Inquiry Act under which Modi government had already set up a similar panel.

There were reports that as no retired judge was willing to head the probe commission, the UPA government was mulling the option of changing the terms of reference for the commission by incorporating a provision that will allow the government to appoint a sitting judge of a high court.

Shah alleged that the UPA government has conveniently "forgotten" the reports of scams like CWG and Adarsh and was now resorting to such "unconstitutional move".


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