The right to individual privacy is a fundamental right under the Constitution, a 9-judge bench of the Indian Supreme Court ruled Thursday in a landmark verdict, Deccan Chronicle reports.
The Constitution bench, headed by Indian Chief Justice J S Khehar, ruled that "right to privacy was an intrinsic part of Right to Life and Personal Liberty under Article 21 and entire Part III of the Indian Constitution".
The Supreme Court overruled the M P Sharma (1950) and Kharak Singh (1960) judgements and held that ‘right to privacy’ was a fundamental right under Article 21 of the Indian Constitution, in a unanimous decision.
Justice Khehar, who read the operative portion of the judgement, said the subsequent verdicts pronounced after M P Sharma and Kharak Singh have laid down the correct position of the law.
Following this, a five-judge Constitutional bench will decide whether Aadhar violates right to privacy.
The nine-judge bench, comprising of Chief Justice of India J S Khehar and Justices J Chelameswar, S A Bobde, R K Agrawal, Rohinton Nariman, A M Sapre, D Y Chandrachud, Sanjay Kishan Kaul and S Abdul Nazeer, had reserved the verdict on August 2 after arguments over six days.
The question of right to privacy rose over making the Aadhaar card -- a unique 12-digit ID for every citizen -- mandatory. Petitions that challenged the Aadhar Act claimed it violated people's right to privacy.