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The website of National Green Tribunal was hacked on Monday evening. People, mostly petitioners and lawyers, who accessed the website for a list of hearings scheduled for Tuesday were shocked to see rude and nasty messages on the homepage.
The message interspersed with a number of expletives read: “You…violate the ceasefire on border and call it ‘surgical strikes’. Now kiss the burn of cyber war.” A version of Pakistan’s national anthem by a Sufi rock band played in the background. It also said, “You…kill innocent people in Kashmir and call yourself defenders of your country.”
Users soon realised that the website was hacked as important content like orders, updates etc couldn’t be accessed. NGT authorities said they had uploaded both the ’cause list’ for Tuesday and the orders of Monday before the site was hacked.
“We immediately complained to National Informatics Centre and the site was blocked. Justice Swatanter Kumar has already taken up the problem. A case has been registered at the Tilak Marg police station,” said Sheetal Sharma, deputy registrar, judicial.
She added, “People who wanted to access the cause list for Tuesday must have already seen it. The schedule for tomorrow will be according to the cause list.”
Meanwhile, lawyers on various WhatsApp groups discussed why the website was targeted. Some called it “silly” while others guessed “it may have been the easiest to hack”.
“We check the cause list every day around 6-7pm. On Monday, we found it was hacked so none of us managed to look at the cause list. I think NIC blocked it, but the defaced page was back around 8.30pm again,” said advocate Anurag Singh.
NGT bar association member Raj Panjwani said, “The Tribunal will have to take action.”
Senior police officers said they received a complaint from NGT. “We will register a case once the probe is complete. A team of officers who have expertise in the field has been designated to probe the case,” said DCP (New Delhi) Jatin Narwhal.