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Supreme Court ruling on right to privacy: Nine-judge bench to deliver verdict shortly

YB WEB DESK. Dated: 8/24/2017 10:30:05 AM

A nine-judge Constitution bench of the Supreme Court on Thursday may decide whether Indians have a fundamental right to privacy, after a five-judge bench hearing a clutch of petitions challenging the Aadhaar Act referred the matter to a larger bench.
The bench, headed by Chief Justice of India J S Khehar, comprises of Justices J Chelameswar, S A Bobde, R K Agrawal, R F Nariman, A M Sapre, D Y Chandrachud, S K Kaul and S Abdul Nazeer. The bench had reserved its verdict on the matter on August 2, after a marathon hearing spread over six days.
The question of whether the right to privacy is a fundamental right guaranteed under the Constitution was first raised in the apex court before a three-judge bench. A batch of petitioners had challenged the Centre’s move to make Aadhaar mandatory to benefit from social and welfare schemes. The three-judge bench had referred the case to a larger bench on July 7, which was set up by the CJI. The five-judge Constitution bench had on July 18 decided to refer the matter to a nine-judge bench.
Here are live updates on the Supreme Court’s ruling on right to privacy:
10.15 am: During the course of the hearing, the Supreme Court had at one point sought to know why citizens are wary of sharing personal information with the State, but have no problem in doing so with private companies. Justice D Y Chandrachud had observed, “When someone uses an iPhone or iPad with fingerprint login, their personal details are already in the public realm… Is there something qualitatively different when the State does the same (seek personal information)?”
10.02 am: In an opinion column in
The Indian Express, Alok Prasanna Kumar provides a definition of privacy: “Privacy is not only about hiding something or keeping it secret. It is, at its core, the right to be left alone. It doesn’t mean that one is withdrawing from society. It is an expectation that society will not interfere in the choices made by the person so long as they do not cause harm to others. It means that one’s right to eat whatever one chooses, the right to drink what one chooses, the right to love and marry whom one chooses, to wear what one chooses, among others, are rights which the state cannot interfere with.”


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