New Delhi (JPN/Bureau): If a new cabinet note is to be believed, Centre will now tap into private phone conversations directly, instead of depending on phone operators. Government will form a central body for the purpose by June 2013.

The Union Cabinet recently passed note for discussions between the Home Ministry, Defense Ministry and National Security Advisor in order to form such a body that would track conversations or keep a watch on them legally.

The matter will also be referred to the Cabinet Committee on Security for approval. A total of Rs 540 cr would be spent on the program.

The note says that with rapid development in the communication sector, it was important to have such a mechanism in place for the sake of national security. The body will not only tap phones but wil also investigate communication technologies.

Recently, the issue of domestic safety had cropped up with Chinese communications technologies and mobile handsets.

The body will be composed of experts from National Technical Research Organisation (NTRO). All voice based services will be surveyed by Centre for Development of Telematics (C-DOT). Internet, Satellites and sea communications will be looked after by NTRO.

This will require extensive technological set-up and the system will become automatic after June 2013.

As of now, probe agencies like the CBI depend upon telecom companies for all such data. The private sector involvement led to a political storm over tapping. Supreem Court has even sent notice to the Centre on the issue.