Published: Wed, July 26, 2017
Health Care | By Oscar Goodwin

Karnataka, WB, Punjab, Puducherry move SC in favour of Right to Privacy

Karnataka, WB, Punjab, Puducherry move SC in favour of Right to Privacy

There are several aspects to Right to Life such as right to food, shelter and employment but everything does not enjoy the status of a fundamental right, said K K Venugopal in the Supreme Court today.

The Supreme Court of India will hear the government's arguments on Wednesday against the constitutional validity of right to privacy in the ongoing case that stemmed from petitioners opposing Aadhaar for privacy infringement.

He further argued that right to life is a "pre-existing right", which "transcends" right to privacy.

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The government said Aadhaar would not fall under the right to privacy. Four non-BJP ruled states - West Bengal, Karnataka, Punjab and Puducherry - joined the chorus to declare privacy a fundamental right, which the State could not allow to be violated at any cost.

A newer nine-judge bench headed by Justice J S Khehar will look into the right to privacy issue pertaining to the Aadhaar case.

Privacy is a fundamental right, the centre conceded today in the Supreme Court, but said it is a qualified one.

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Senior counsel Gopal Subramanium had then told the apex court that the right to privacy is a pre-existing natural right which is inherent in the constitution though not explicitly mentioned.

"We can't say every encroachment of privacy is to be elevated to fundamental right".

While hearing the petitioners, the Supreme Court observed that right to privacy can not be absolute and the state may have powers to put reasonable curbs. The senior lawyer also urged the State to formulate a "robust data protection law" to ensure that information of the citizens is secure.

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Hearings related to the right to privacy and Aadhaar cards will resume on Thursday, where the respondents i.e. the State will resume its arguments. Is there a fundamental right to privacy under the Indian Constitution? "This court needs to strike a balance", he concluded before the bench, which also comprised justices J Chelameswar, SA Bobde, RK Agrawal, Rohinton Fali Nariman, Abhay Manohar Sapre, DY Chandrachud, Sanjay Kishan Kaul and S Abdul Nazeer apart from the chief justice.

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