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Opinion

Right to privacy: Delhi High Court seeks Center’s position on PIL against surveillance systems

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On Wednesday, the Delhi High Court sought a response from the Center on a PIL that claimed that citizens’ right to privacy was “in jeopardy” by the implementation and operation of surveillance systems such as the Centralized Monitoring System (CMS). , Network Traffic Analysis (NETRA) and National Intelligence Network (NATGRID).

A bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Judge Prateek Jalan issued a notice to the ministries of Internal Affairs, Information Technology, Communications and Law and Justice, requesting their position on the guilty plea of ​​an NGO and listed the matter for your hearing on January 7, 2021.

The allegation of the NGO, Center for Public Interest Litigation (CPIL), has stated that these surveillance systems allow central and state law enforcement agencies to intercept and monitor all bulk telecommunications, which constitutes a violation of the fundamental right to privacy of individuals.

The statement, presented through attorney Prashant Bhushan, has argued that under the existing legal framework there is an “insufficient oversight mechanism” to authorize and review interception and monitoring orders issued by state agencies.

The NGO has sought indications from the Center to “permanently stop the execution and operation of the surveillance projects, CMS, NETRA and NATGRID, which allows the massive collection and analysis of personal data.

It has also sought the constitution of a permanent independent oversight body, judicial or parliamentary, to issue and review statutory orders / orders for interception and supervision under the enabling provisions of the Indian Telegraph Act 1885 and the Technology Act of the 2000 information. PTI HMP DV DV

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