According to a report by the New York Times the controversial Israeli spyware Pegasus was bought by the Indian Government in 2017 as part of $ 2 billion package for weapons including a missile system.
About the report on Pegasus:
In a report the NYT, titled ‘The Battle for the World’s Most Powerful Cyberweapon’, said that the Israeli firm NSO Group had for nearly a decade been “selling its surveillance software on a subscription basis to law-enforcement and intelligence agencies around the world, promising that it could do what no one else, not a private company, not even a state intelligence service, could do. They can consistently and reliably crack the encrypted communications of any iPhone or Android smartphone.”
Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Israel in July 2017:
The report also referred to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Israel in July 2017 – to become the first Indian prime minister to visit the country. It further said that “For decades, India had maintained a policy of what it called “commitment to the Palestinian cause,” and relations with Israel were frosty. The Modi visit, however, was notably cordial, complete with a carefully staged moment of him and (then Israeli) Prime Minister (Benjamin) Netanyahu walking together barefoot on a local beach.
Besides, they had reason for the warm feelings. Their countries had agreed on the sale of a package of sophisticated weapons and intelligence gear worth roughly USD 2 billion, with the spyware and a missile system as the centerpieces.”
“Months later, Netanyahu made a rare state visit to India. And in June 2019, India voted in support of Israel at the UN’s Economic and Social Council to deny observer status to a Palestinian human rights organisation, a first for the nation,” they wrote.
Pegasus is spyware developed by the Israeli cyber arms firm NSO Group that can be covertly installed on mobile phones. It was first identified in August 2016. Rather than being a specific exploit, Pegasus is a suite of exploits that uses many vulnerabilities in the system.