New Delhi, March 31
Emphasising the need to exert “democratic pressure” on lawmakers and Parliament to create a rational legal system to regulate monitoring of citizens, former Supreme Court Judge J Chelameswar today said surveillance by the state was “unacceptable unless absolutely necessary” in larger public interest.
Speaking at a function organised by the Common Cause and the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies (CSDS) to release a report titled ‘Status of Policing in India Report 2023: Surveillance and the Question of Privacy’, Justice Chelameswar said the State has reasons to keep surveillance depending upon the situations, but there should be “an amount of transparency in the process”.
He said, “When I talk about governments, I do not talk about any political party. Whichever political party is in the government, there is a change in the hardware, software is the same.”
Justice Chelameswar said, “Of late, we hear a lot of complaints of the abuse of governmental agencies, particularly the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). And, the political party, which is shouting hoarse on the misuse of the CBI now, managed this country for almost 40 years before that. They never bothered to put this CBI on any more stable and statutory and rational basis and today, they find that the present dispensation is abusing this. This is the matter of opinion.”
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