HYDERABAD: Digitisation of personal data combined with the world wide web (WWW) has been posing a serious challenge to privacy. A recently published research paper by a University of Hyderabad (UoH) scholar in the journal Surveillance and Society raised concern over the push for Digital India by Centre.The research paper says, “The grand digitisation project was veiled and fanatically endorsed with a tunnel vision while any robust privacy legislation to protect the flow of data was absent.”
The research paper cited how in recent times there have been incidents in India of personal information in Aadhar database being leaked, financial frauds through government and private e-wallet apps and surveillance by the government through interception of data from private information based companies.
Thursday’s judgement by SC declaring privacy as a fundamental right has received varied responses in this aspect. While some believe that the judgement has opened doors for a robust approach towards framing laws and policies to protect privacy, others say that the judgement is late.
Prof Vasanthi Srinivasan, head of Political Science department, UoH says, “The decision has arrived late. The way corporate and small private companies collect data from public and how public themselves willingly give up data has changed over years.”Keeping apart state surveillance, can one go against a private company or a corporate giant for violating right to privacy? This is not yet possible.Pavan Duggal, SC lawyer and a Cyber Law Expert says that for this to happen the government must pass new regulations aimed at private companies and that the SC judgement gives a good scope to formulate tough laws in this regard.