Monitoring of Aadhaar content: SC seeks A-G's help

Monitoring of Aadhaar content: SC seeks A-G's help

Supreme Court

The Supreme Court on Friday sought Attorney General's assistance on a plea by a TMC MLA, contending the UIDAI has initiated a move to monitor online and other media contents related to Aadhaar, which may result in breach of privacy of citizens.

A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud put the writ petition filed by Mahua Moitra for consideration on September 11.

Senior advocate Abhishek M Singhvi, representing the petitioner, said like a previous move by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry's decision to set up social media hub, which was subsequently scrapped, this time Unique Identification Authority of India has invited a similar bid for monitoring of media contents, including of Facebook and Twitter.

Moitra, in her plea, feared that this could enable UIDAI to lay down a surveillance mechanism and result in the breach of privacy.

“Let the matter be listed on September 11. The Attorney General for India is requested to assist the court on that day,” the bench said.

On a petition by Moitra, the Centre had on August three told the court that it has withdrawn the move to establish a social media communication hub for analysing online activities of the citizens.

The move by the NDA government then came weeks after the court took strong exception to the Information and Broadcasting Ministry's decision in April, saying it would be "like creating a surveillance state". The court had earlier also asked if the government wanted to tap citizens' WhatsApp messages as well.