Whether Right to Privacy is a Fundamental Right to be decided by 9 judge panel of SC

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A nine-judge Bench of the Supreme Court will decide whether the Right to Privacy is a fundamental right under the Constitution of India.
Supreme Court
A 5-judge Constitution Bench hearing the Aadhaar case today, comprising of Chief Justice of India Justice JS Khehar and Justices J Chelameswar, SA Bobde, DY Chandrachud and Abdul Nazeer, have unanimously decided to place this issue before a 9-judge Bench.
The earlier judgements of MP Sharma And Others v. Satish Chandra and Kharak Singh v. State of Uttar Pradesh will play a key role in debating and deciding the ratio of the correctness of those judgments.

A five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice J S Khehar said that the larger bench would examine the correctness of the two judgements delivered in the cases of Kharak Singh and M P Sharma in which it was held that right to privacy was not a fundamental right.

While the Kharak Singh judgement was delivered by a six- judge bench in 1960, the M P Sharma verdict was reported in 1950 and was delivered by an eight-judge Constitution bench.

The five-judge bench, also comprising Justices J Chelameswar, S A Bobde, D Y Chandrachud and S Abdul Nazeer, said that the nine-judge bench would commence hearing tomorrow and decide the issue as to whether the fundamental rights, described under Part III of the Constitution, also include the right to privacy.

The order came on a batch of petitions challenging the constitutional validity of the Aadhaar scheme.

It has also been alleged that the Aadhaar scheme infringes the ‘fundamental right to privacy’.

The petitions were referred to a larger bench in 2015 when then attorney general Mukul Rohatgi had referred to the inconsistencies in the past apex court verdicts and said that the issue whether right to privacy was a fundamental right or not, needed to be settled first.

(With PTI inputs)

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