SC Constitution bench to hear Aadhaar challenge on privacy issue

SC Constitution bench to hear Aadhaar challenge on privacy issue

A five-judge Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court will hear from July 18 whether collection of biometric information, like fingerprints and iris, for the goal of obtaining Aadhaar card will violate the fundamental right to privacy.

On Wednesday, Attorney General K.K. Venugopal and senior advocate Shyam Divan joined forces and for the early setting up of a Constitution Bench to hear the petitions, made an urgent mention before a Bench led by Chief Justice of India J.S. Khehar.

The hearing for the same has been dated for July 18 and 19.

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The batch of seven special leave petitions filed by the Delhi government has challenged the Delhi High Court's decision to uphold the L-G's power not only over the police, land and public order but also in "services". They claimed that Aadhaar compromised with their right to privacy as it mandated people to part with body details, including iris and biometrics. In 1954 and 1964, Supreme Court benches ruled that there was no fundamental right to privacy.

"My opinion is that once a matter has been referred to a Constitution bench, then all the issues arising out of it should be with the constitution bench. You two can decide the possibility of nine judges hearing it", Justice Chelameswar, heading the three-judge bench also comprising Justices AM Khanwilkar and Navin Sinha, had said.

The apex court had, last month, refused to pass an interim order against the Centre's notification, with the government assuring it that no one would be deprived for want of this identification.

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