Privacy Declared As Fundamental Right In India

An unanimously rule was approved in India’s Supreme Court on Thursday that privacy is a fundamental right of every citizen in a landmark judgment that could affect the country’s mammoth, unique identity card system. The verdict was in response to many petitions filed in courts questioning the validity of assigning a biometric identity card to every individual.The government has made the identity card mandatory for all citizens to avail welfare benefits, but human rights group raised concerns about the risk of personal data being misused. The ruling overturns two earlier decisions by smaller benches of the Supreme Court, which said privacy was not a fundamental right. On Thursday, a nine-judge bench of the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that the right to privacy is intrinsic to the fundamental rights guaranteed by the Indian Constitution.The decision is being viewed as a setback to the government’s efforts to make the ID card compulsory. The government will now have to convince the court that forcing citizens to give their fingerprint samples and a scan of their iris is not a violation of privacy.Photo Credit: Getty

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