Recently a Benchof nine Judges of the Apex Court headed by then Chief Justice J.S Khehar held in a monosemous conclusion that Right to Privacy is Fundamental thereby countermanding its previous judgments in M.P Sharma and Kharak Singh where it was held not a Fundamental Right. This judgment is also in line with International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (legally protects persons against arbitrary interference with one’s privacy, family, home, honor) to which India is a signatory. This right cannot be considered as a single, homogenous right. Rather it is a chunk of Fundamental Right to personal liberty and is multifaceted. This purports right to self autonomy, Information self determination, protection from state surveillance, self dignity, bodily integrity, freedom to dissent. o Justice Chandrachud said, “Privacy includes at its core the preservation of personal intimacies, the sanctity of family life, marriage, procreation, the home and sexual orientation. Privacy also connotes a right to be left alone.” This judgment has chilling effect on many other issues like Section 377 of IPC, Euthanasia, Beef Ban, Abortion and it mayhap be a big gust to government’s pet project of making Aadhar mandatory for various schemes. Though this also doesn’t mean that State can’t interfere in someone’s personal space now but making Privacy as a fundamental affair will provide proper abutment to individuals against the arbitrary trespassing by State. The Court by taking this decision braced the old adage of “A Man is king of his own castle” This Judgment of the Apex Court will set many precedents for future cases. Already the Bench has censured the Judgment of Habeas Corpus Case (1976) stating it as a fleck on democracy. This judgment need to be taken in its full letter and spirit and can also be contemplated as second most important judgment after Keshvananda Bharti Case (1973).
But in the age of technology where our day starts with unlocking office with our biometrics and ending with Facebook, our lives are hijacked by technology where we are being manipulated by these tech joints because of absence of any sinew legal backing. Whatever you checkout on one online shopping website automatically shows up whenever you use some other website. This is how we have made ourselves trapped in such an incessant loop. Also in an era where government is also emphasising on use of Big Data and with the aim of Digital India, it has become apposite to adjunct this judgment with a robust Data Protection Law. By this way, we can accomplish the hankering of competing with world powers in economical as well as governance besides securing the interests as well as rights of our citizens.
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