Date August 24, 2017
Supreme Court of India rules that privacy is a fundamental right

A nine-judge bench of the Supreme Court of India (SC) on 24 August 2017 in K S Puttuswamy (Retd) and Anr. v. Union of India and Ors. (Privacy Case) unanimously held that privacy is a fundamental right, and that the ‘right to privacy is an integral part of both life and personal liberty under Article 21’ of the Constitution of India.

The SC also overruled several cases including M P Sharma v. Satish Chandra, District Magistrate, Delhi (1954) SCR 1077 and Kharak Singh v. State of Uttar Pradesh (1964) 1 SCR 332, where the right to privacy was not considered as a fundamental right.

The SC order now categorically states that privacy is a fundamental right protected by the Constitution of India, Which would in turn mean that any breach would give rise to remedies under articles 32 and 226 by which an aggrieved person may approach the SC or a High Court, respectively.

The SC ruling is now likely to bring back many cases to the fore where the courts had earlier held that privacy is not a fundamental right in India.

The full text of the judgment of the Supreme Court can be accessed at:

http://supremecourtofindia.nic.in/supremecourt/2012/35071/35071_2012_Judgement_24-Aug-2017.pdf