A Great Day For India, Supreme Court Rules That The Right To Privacy Is A Fundamental Right!

Sonali Gupta

The Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that privacy is a fundamental right because it is intrinsic to the right to life. P Chidambaram says- Privacy is the core of personal liberty; Article 21 has acquired a new magnificence”. The decision was unanimous as 5-judge bench tested the validity of Aadhaar in MP Sharma case and six-judge bench judgment in Kharak Singh case – both of which had ruled that privacy is not a Fundamental Right.

“Any law, like the Aadhar Act or any other law, which seeks to restrict the right to privacy will have to be tested on the touchstone of Article 21,” said Senior lawyer Prashant Bhushan.

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In the wake of data leaks and hacking incidents, Aadhaar critics argue that biometric data linked to the card could be misused by the government agencies. The issue of privacy had emerged when the apex court was dealing with a batch of petitions challenging the government’s move to make biometric-based Aadhaar mandatory for availing the benefits of various social welfare schemes.

The gist of today – The decision in MP Sharma stands overruled. The decision in Kharak Singh to the extent it holds no privacy stands overruled. Privacy is protected under Article 21 of the Constitution as well as freedoms enshrined under Part III!

There can be no dignity without privacy, and dignity is part of the Preamble, part of the basic structure of the Constitution. This is surely a landmark judgment by Supreme Court.

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