The Dilemma of Conscience- A Closer look at the Sabrimala Verdict

  • Abhijith S Kumar

Should judges ignore the disaffection caused by decisions? The spirit of the law demands a considered appreciation of the social milieu. The invocation of battle [review petition] metaphors to sanctify a review-worthy judgment is nothing but an apology for judicial absolutism”,[1] opined a civilian in response to the review application against the Sabarimala verdict.[2] However, a large section also maintains that “the decision reaffirms the Constitution’s transformative character and derives strength from the centrality it accords to fundamental rights.[3] Both observations raise cardinal issues on the judicial process and constitutional aspirations, which is sought to be addressed hereafter. Even when the author desires to side with the revolutionary evolution of feministic jurisprudence in this judgment which upholds constitutional morality as against the patriarchy driven ‘public morality’, the glitches in the majority opinion cannot be overlooked and therefore falls in a dilemma.

The judgment rendered by Dipak Mishra, J. opens thus: “The irony that is nurtured by the society is to impose a rule, however unjustified, and proffer explanation or justification to substantiate the substratum of the said rule”. The learned judge goes on to acknowledge the long history of oppression that women had to suffer and traces dualism in religion driven by gender stereotypes as reasons resulting in indignity to women. The rape culture prevalent in India and gender-specific violence and discrimination stems from the factum of gender role attribution. As a social institution, the courts in India also have a socio-moral obligation to interfere in such matters. However, one of the very basic issues that popped up in the judgment was the constitutional authority of courts to comment on religious matters.

Faith and religion are so intertwined with the culture and social fabric of the nation that often more rights are attributed to deities as opposed to the hapless subjects who are ‘living’. The very discussion of celibacy and austerity exposes the vulnerability of Indian society, which sadly doesn’t seem to do anything other than suppressing dissent voices, the protests that followed being proof. Unfortunately, that arguments were raised to extend constitutional rights to the deity beyond the property rights, the extension of which was the reason for conferring a juristic personality.

Placing reliance on the concept of secularism, Indu Malhotra, J. vehemently attacks the interference of courts in religious matters. Whereas, D Y Chandrachud, J. condemns the Bombay High Court decision in Narasu[4] and holds that immunising customs and usages takes away the primacy of the Constitution and thereby exorcises the ‘Ghost of Narasu’. Religion being yet another social institution, leaving it unregulated beyond the purview of the judiciary may open a Pandora’s box. For this reason, the majority opinion holds good.

The court discussed among the above-mentioned issue, the issues pertaining to the right to worship, dimensions of public morality, conceptual clarity of ‘essential religious practice’ doctrine and untouchability. Then remains the initial premise from where we started – the acceptable limits of judicial activism and consideration of public sentiments and practicability of enforcement.

The right to worship stems from Article 25 of the Constitution. The majority opinion places emphatic reliance on the usage ‘all persons’ within the Article to put across that the right is available to everyone irrespective of their gender. This is not denied in the dissenting judgment. However, the reasoning given by each of the judges suffer from clarity or rather are conflicting interpretations of the same premise.

Dipak Mishra, J. explaining the tenets of religious freedom, draw observations from Nar Hari Shastri[5]:

“Once it is admitted that the temple is a public place of worship, the right of entrance into the temple for…. worship is a right which flows from the nature of the institution itself, and for the acquisition of such rights, no custom or immemorial usage need to be asserted or proved.”

The excerpt is a positive statement that negates the need for any evidence of customary practice to acquire the right of entry. But it is noteworthy that the same doesn’t negate the evidentiary value of custom to restrict entry. The challenge is posed in the further paragraph:

“Right of entering the temple…is a legal right in the true sense of expression but it can be exercised subject to restrictions which the temple committee may impose in good faith…for ensuring proper performance of customary worship.”

Section 15A of the Travancore Cochin Hindu Religious Institutions Act, 1950, the provisions of which formed the basis for the finding of the temple in dispute as a public temple limits the functions of the Board “to see that the regular traditional rites and ceremonies according to the practice prevalent in the religious institutions are performed promptly.” Thus, it seems that the learned judge contradicts at this juncture.

But the view on constitutional morality seems to rectify this defect. The limitations under Article 25 include public order, morality and health, and all the judges had limited the discussion to public morality. The discussion on public morality is rather interesting. Deepak Mishra, J. concurred by R F Nariman, J. equated public morality to constitutional morality. Even when doubt exists as to the veracity of this conclusion, from the observations in Manoj Narula,[6] wherein it states that the traditions and conventions have to grow and sustain the value of constitutional morality, it is clear that constitutional morality can form some force reshaping traditions. This idea is further backed by SC’s finding in Navtej Singh[7] wherein SC acknowledges the diversity of thought and aspirations but insists on non-abridgement of others’ rights, upholding the principle of constitutional morality.

D Y Chandrachud J. even goes on to reject the ‘prevailing social conception’ test of evaluating public morality which has been propounded in the context of Article 19. He goes on to develop the concept in terms of justice, liberty, equality, and fraternity. The learned judge purports an exalted value to ‘dignity’ and identifies constitutional morality as the resort to ensure it and hence opined: “The founding faith upon which the Constitution is based in the belief that it is in the dignity of each individual that the pursuit of happiness is founded”.

Also, Chandrachud J.’s analysis of Article 25(2) is pertinent. It is found that though this provision doesn’t place a positive duty on the State to throw open Hindu religious institutions of public nature to all sections of Hindus, analysed with the historical background in which the Constituent Assembly drafted it, it shows that the Assembly intended to protect the State measures in enforcing constitutional mandates from circumscription by Art. 25. Thus, the respected judge explains the tenets of religious freedom in correlation with constitutional morality. It is maintained that the individual right of freedom of religion is subject to the overriding constitutional postulates of equality, liberty and personal freedoms under Part III.     

 Whereas, Indu Malhotra J. maintains that the right to worship is to be predicated based on the affirmation of a belief in the particular manifestation of the deity in the temple. This seems to be an argument formed of the premise of identification of faith as a standard form contract wherein if one does not intend to believe the faith as to how it is, he can’t exercise the claim of his right, which is absurd. An interesting observation would be: “The right to gender equality to offer worship to Lord Ayyappa is protected by permitting woman of all ages, to visit temples where he has not manifested himself in the form of a ‘Naishtik Brahmachari’, and there is no similar restriction in those temples.” The underlying concept behind this proposition is that the right to worship doesn’t include the right to worship at any and every place of worship, as propounded in Ismail Faruqui,[8] though the matter has not been cited or referred. But in this regard, a distinction is to be made as in Ismail Faruqui, such a conclusion was made as it involved acquisition of place of worship effectively denying the opportunity to all persons in a particular religion whereas such a proposition doesn’t stand good when one section of the community is allowed entry while a counterpart is denied the same right.

Even when Indu Malhotra, J. understands constitutional morality as achieving the objects contemplated in the Constitution, observes that notions of rationality cannot be invoked in matters of religion by courts. This seems outwardly contradictory, but a close introspection leads to the conclusion that such a deduction is made on the identification of ‘pluralistic nature’ and ‘secular polity’ as one of the elements intended to be protected by the Constitution. This leaves us in a dilemma of ranking dignity and pluralism based on the importance that the Constitution ascribes to each.

The majority judgment favoured entry of women of the impugned age group on the ground that such a restriction doesn’t qualify as an ‘essential religious practise’. What constitutes an essential religious practice must be determined concerning its doctrines, practices, tenets, historical background, etc.[9] Thus, the taking away of such a practice, if it results in a fundamental change in the character of the religion, then it’s an essential practice.[10] Citing Ratilal Panachand Gandhi,[11] Indu Malhotra J. identifies essential religious practice as those which are claimed to be so. This, the author finds an incorrect proposition of law as later judgments including the latest decision in Shayara Bano[12] allow judicial reasoning in this regard. The learned judge relies on Sheervai’s comment on Shirur Mutt: “what is ‘superstition’ to one section of the public may be a matter of fundamental religious belief to another.” The author doesn’t dispute this but points out that this along with other authorities cited had discussed this proposition in the light of the rights of religious denominations. However, herein, it cannot be satisfactorily concluded that Indu Malhotra, J. succeeds in establishing Lord Ayyappa worshippers as a separate religious denomination.

In the discussion relating to the question of whether Sabarimala pilgrims form a religious denomination, the author aligns with the majority decision that ruled in negative. The discussion on religious denomination throws up a much interesting question as to whether one can be a part of more than one religious denomination at the same point in time. Going by the minority judgment, the answer should be in affirmative, in which the author finds a dilution of the settled rules on denominations. The very idea of a denomination is the existence of a common faith, the satisfaction of which seems impossible when one simultaneously believes in another faith too.

One of the laudable findings made by Chandrachud J. is on ‘untouchability’. Adhering to usage in Article 17, untouchability of ‘all forms’, the lordship deviated from the previous SC judgments that confined the concept of untouchability to caste-based exclusions. Overthrowing the reasoning made in the precedents limiting the scope of untouchability owing to the factum of the word ‘untouchability’ being put within inverted commas (“ ”), Chandrachud J. identified the notions of “purity and pollution” as the sustaining force of untouchability and found it to be against the tenets of dignity and constitutional morality.

Even when, the majority judgment conforms to the transformative vision of the Constitution, the public sentiment has made it in a way impracticable to enforce. Thus, the question arises as to whether public sentiments and the practicability of enforcement be considered while exercising the judicial process. At times, as Cardozo himself has pointed out, the judges will have to use knowledge other than those relating to law, including those from life to address a social issue. This may be seen as judicial activism as it exists today. However, consideration of public sentiments may gain popularity to the judge but may cause serious damage to the principles of the rule of law. The recent incident of police encounter of rape accused challenges the very sanctity of legal conscience and is nothing less than a move instigated by popular will. Constitutional morality also calls for respect for governmental organs and the democratic process. 

The author is a 4th Year Student currently studying at NUALS, Kochi


[1] https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/letters/sabarimala-verdict/article30110765.ece

[2] Indian Young Lawyers’ Association & Ors. v. State of Kerala & Ors., 2018 SCC OnLine SC 1690.  

[3] https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/editorial/freedom-to-pray/article25074443.ece

[4] Narasu Appa Pattil v. State of Maharashtra, 2004 SCC OnLine Bom 1142.

[5] Nar Hari Shastri v. Shri Badrinath Temple Committee, AIR 1952 SC 245.

[6] Manoj Narula v. Union of India, (2014) 9 SCC 1.

[7] Navtej Singh Johar v. Union of India, (2018) 10 SCC 1.

[8] Ismail Faruqui v. Union of India, (1994) 6 SCC 360.

[9] Commr., Hindu Religious Endowments v. Shri Lakshmindra Thirtha Swamiar of Shirur Mutt, AIR 1954 SC 282.

[10] Seshammal v. State of Tamil Nadu, AIR 1972 SC 1586.

[11] Ratilal Panachand Gandhi v. State of Bombay, AIR 1954 SC 388.

[12] Shayara Bano v. Union of India, AIR 2017 SC 4609.

Judicial Evolution of the Right to Privacy and the Aadhar conundrum by Harish Jayakumar, HNLU

The Industrial Revolution picked up steam at the turn of the 19th century and the world underwent a decisive change forever. Almost 200 years later, the world is similarly being transformed by the Technological Revolution. It has been instrumental in propelling us into the Information Age where the proliferation of knowledge has never been greater. However, while the benefits are numerous and immense in their scale, there are equally vital concerns ranging from privacy to data-protection to which a search for an effective solution is still ongoing. One needs to understand the significance of technology because the current and future notions of privacy hinges on how modern society shapes itself to this technological change. Our right to privacy is not the same definition that existed in the ancient era and is constantly evolving and adapting with the times. Previously, the notion of privacy was restricted to the idea of protecting one’s person and property from torts such as trespass[1]. Now, the right to privacy has evolved completely to encapsulate not just privacy in the physical state but also to privacy in the spiritual and intellectual state as well[2].

In India, defining the right to privacy and its extent is more complicated because the Indian Constitution does not guarantee a specific right to privacy. Though the Supreme Court in various judgements has affirmed indeed that a right to privacy is an inherent right and that it flows naturally from the Right to Life and Personal Liberty, it is still a matter of contention. This has created consternation because the right to privacy is an important and inalienable right inherent to every Indian citizen but this is being offset by the State’s need to balance its national security interests. Most recently, the debate around the right to privacy has arisen around the Aadhaar which is a unique 12-digit identity number exclusive to every Indian[3] which is issued by the central government agency known as the Unique Identification Authority of India (henceforth UIDAI). The purpose of the Aadhaar is akin to what the role is of the social security number in the United States. It qualifies as a valid ID for availing various important government services and to receive government subsidies.

The controversy around Aadhaar is because the UIDAI collects the biometric and demographic data of the residents and stores this in a centralized database. This poses a serious risk to the right to privacy of each individual as it is now possible to categorize everyone in society by analyzing their biometric information. This is notwithstanding the fact that this information is in a centralized database which is a major security concern. The safeguards that have been introduced by the government in order to ostensibly protect the information of the citizens are also wholly inadequate and laughable by international standards. The implementation of the project has not taken place smoothly and has been ridden with a slew of controversies which raises questions regarding the efficacy of the government’s methods. The Aadhaar has been introduced by the government to provide many of their most important services and subsidies through the Public Distribution System (PDS). It is directly transferred to the lower strata of society in order to eliminate the middlemen and the constant leakages that plague the system. Also as of May 2016, almost 101 crore Aadhaar cards have been issued and 97% of adults possess an Aadhaar card[4]. So, it is clear that the project is on its way to its completion. Therefore, there are two very important questions that arise from this. Firstly, is the right to privacy a fundamental right guaranteed under the Constitution and is the UIDAI or Aadhaar in violation of an individual’s right to privacy?

 

The Supreme Court’s stance

 

The evolution of the Right to Privacy did not start out positively in India. The first case before the court which addressed the Right to Privacy was in M.P. Sharma & Others vs. Satish Chandra, District Magistrate of Delhi & Others[5]. The case considered whether there were any constitutional limitations to the government’s search and seizure of people’s homes. Here, the headnote reads, “When the Constitution makers have thought fit not to subject such regulation to Constitutional limitations by recognition of a fundamental right to privacy, analogous to the American Fourth Amendment, we have no justification to import it into a different fundamental right by some process of strained construction.” The American Fourth Amendment states that it is the “right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures.”[6] An important point to be noted is that this does not pertain to the entire right to privacy. It only deals with a part of it, namely the protection of people against search and seizure. Following this is Kharak Singh vs State of Uttar Pradesh[7] which dealt with the physical surveillance of ‘history sheeters’. In this case also, the right to privacy was not recognized. The judgement begins stating that “as already pointed out, the right to privacy is not a guaranteed right under our constitution.”[8] Though, the saving grace here is “as already pointed out” which refers to an earlier section of the judgement where the Court quotes the US Fourth Amendment, and then declares that the Constitution does not confer any ‘like constitutional guarantee’[9] following the ratio of the M.P. Sharma Case. It is clear that both these cases don’t refer to right to privacy as a whole. The Attorney General, Mr. Mukul Rohatgi provoked a huge controversy when he stated in the Supreme Court that Right to Privacy is not a right provided by the Constitution while defending the claim that the Aadhaar violated the Right to Privacy on the basis of these 2 cases[10]. This was a technical error on the Attorney General’s part as both of these cases deal with the question of whether the US Fourth Amendment can be read into the Indian Constitution and not about the whole right to privacy. The 2 cases discussed above don’t rule out a broad constitutional right to privacy as the right to privacy is a bundle of rights not limited to only surveillance or search and seizure. Also, in the minority judgement of the Kharak Singh case, Justice Subba Rao recognized the need for a right to privacy under Article 21 and set the foreground for shaping the right to privacy under Article 21.

In subsequent years, small bench judges expanded the position of the right to privacy. In Govind vs State of Madhya Pradesh[11] which also dealt with the surveillance of ‘history sheeters’, the Court held that the surveillance by various means is not violative of Article 21 of the Constitution as it was a regulation according to “procedure established by law.”[12] However, it recognized the right to privacy in a limited context and allowed that it should be developed on a case-by-case basis. The true break for the Right to Privacy came with the celebrated Maneka Gandhi[13] case which greatly expanded the ambit of Article 21. In the judgement, Justice Bhagwati observed, “The expression ‘personal liberty’ in Article 21 is of the widest amplitude and it covers a variety of rights which go to constitute the personal liberty of man and some of them have raised to the status of distinct fundamental rights and given additional protection under Article 19.” Thus, the Court had held Article 21 to be controlled by Article 19 binding the two important rights together. This also meant that the ambit of right to privacy had greatly increased and could now be interpreted in a much more liberal manner. So, following this in R. Rajagopal vs State of Tamil Nadu[14]  the apex court observed, “The right to privacy is implicit in the right to life and liberty guaranteed to the citizens of this country by Article 21. It is a right to be let alone. A citizen has a right to safeguard the privacy of his own, his family, marriage, procreation, motherhood, child bearing and education among other matters.[15]” Therefore, these final cases represented a decisive shift in the court’s ratio towards the right to privacy. Previously, the court took a cautious stance and interpreted the law in a positive manner following the text of the Constitution. With the liberalization of the country during the early 90s, the Court also followed suit as observed in R. Rajagopal and took favorable interpretations of the right to privacy.

The Evolution of the Aadhaar Project

The need for issuing every citizen an identity card and number had started during the Vajpayee years itself. It was then taken up the subsequent UPA government which established the UIDAI as an attached office of the Planning Commission in 2009. As stated above, the purpose of the Aadhaar is to issue a unique 12-digit number to all residents of India in the form of the Aadhaar card which will serve as the primary proof of identity anywhere across India. This card would contain their biographic and demographic information such as photograph, ten fingerprints and two iris scans which would then be stored in a centralized database[16]. In the beginning, the Aadhaar was created in order to weed out illegal aliens but this has changed to focus it as a development initiative[17]. In its current form, Aadhaar is part of the government’s flagship JAM Trinity (Jan Dhan, Aadhaar and Mobile Banking) by which the government seeks to provide its services to the people using these as the medium in a more efficient, effective and economical way. Aadhaar is the lynchpin of this program and some of the government programs which can be availed using the Aadhaar card include procuring an LPG connection, subsidized rations from the PDS, and benefits under NSAP pension schemes, obtaining a SIM card or opening a bank account[18]. The importance of the Aadhaar is therefore clear and India needs such an identity card so that the beneficial schemes that the government implement reaches those that need it the most.

Troubling Concerns

The Aadhaar has gone through a slew of controversies since its inception and this has raised many vital concerns. Until March 2016, the Aadhaar did not even have legislative backing and the entire project continued to run only on the basis of an executive order[19]. It was only on March 11, 2016 that the Parliament passed the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, benefits and services) Act, 2016. Even this was not without controversy as the Bill was introduced as a money bill in order to bypass the Rajya Sabha where the ruling government did not have a majority.

Another controversy is the so-called “voluntary” nature of the Aadhaar card. In March 2014, the Supreme Court passed an interim order declaring that the Aadhaar is not mandatory and no one should be forced to use it to avail government services[20]. However, the government fosters the illusion that an Aadhaar is absolutely necessary and one must register their bank accounts with their Aadhaar number in order to avail its various facilities. Indeed, it was only after the Supreme Court passed its orders declaring that no one should be denied services for want of an Aadhaar that the government made statements stating that it was voluntary[21]. In fact, some of the government’s most important schemes such as Jan Dhan Yojana, Ration Card & LPG Subsidy and Mobile Numbers don’t even require the use of an Aadhaar. Therefore, it begs the question as to why the government is so focused on promoting it as a mandatory requirement and it raises concerns about their need to profile the citizens.

This leads us to the most important issue regarding Aadhaar which is privacy or the lack of it in the entire Aadhaar project. The main danger is that it opens the door to mass surveillance because Most of the “Aadhaar-enabled” databases will be accessible to the government[22]. This brings to mind the Snowden leaks in 2013 which revealed that the US government was extensively spying on its own citizens in the guise of “protecting national interests”. Another important concern that has been raised is the method and process of data collection. The UIDAI has enlisted the services of several private subcontractors in order to collect the data which greatly increases the possibility of leakages of data occurring[23]. They are also not responsible to Indian law for data collation and this greatly exacerbates the threat to the right to privacy. Lastly, there is the use of the centralized database which keeps the record of all the biometric and demographic information of each citizen. This has been a great concern because of 2 reasons. Firstly, the data is in the hands of the government which can then use it in order to categorize the people in society. Also, there is the possibility that data leaks may arise from this centralized database because there is as yet, no foolproof system in place to guard against breach of data from the private players despite the UIDAI’s claims that it has robust security measures in place[24].

The UIDAI had an opportunity to implement the Aadhaar for the noble purpose of setting up an effective Public Distribution System and also a pan-India identity card for any transaction throughout the length and breadth of the country. While this has ostensibly been done in some respects, it has also come at a great cost. The government has in the background created a big-brother like situation where they are poised to misuse this data for mass surveillance and profile the citizens in the country. In the world’s largest democracy, such a fundamental violation of a natural right is deeply regrettable.

Conclusion

 

Let us be clear that an absolute right to privacy is impossible in this day and age. It is a fact that somehow, somewhere, we are bound to be identified and categorized in some respect. With technology pervading and becoming an intrinsic part of our lives, it is not possible to truly enjoy a complete right to privacy. However, this does not mean that the right to privacy should be made inviolable to allow mass surveillance by a government. There are still certain fundamental tenets about the right to privacy that must be respected and protected at all costs. Therefore, this presents a new question to the social contract: Does a citizen forsake one’s right to privacy in order to safeguard national security interests? The answer is undoubtedly no because this is a right that is an essential constituent of personal liberty and also to enjoy a free and fruitful life. The Supreme Court is currently deliberating over whether the Right to Privacy constitutes a fundamental right and one only hopes that they declare a positive affirmation firmly entrenching it so. This is important because going forward technology is going to play an even more important role in lives of people. Therefore, stringent declarations protecting the rights of people in case of data protection and privacy violations will become all the more important. By setting a precedent right now, it will help the future generations to expand upon the doctrine. Laying ironclad precedents also sends a message to the government to not tamper with the rights of citizens from the start and conduct their policies respecting these principles. It also ensures that projects such as Aadhaar which are in danger of grossly violating an individual’s right to privacy are never again conducted in the manner that they have been. The Aadhaar is currently poised to be one of the government’s most successful initiatives considering the amount the government has saved plugging leakages in the PDS and directly helping the people who are below poverty line. However, the government is the caretaker of the people and they should be providing the best possible safeguards if they are undertaking any measure that may compromise on an individual’s right. It is regrettable that the same cannot be said of the Aadhaar which stands as a threat to the right to privacy of every citizen. So, it is up to the people to put pressure on the courts and the Parliament alike so that they can take cognizance of the needs of the people and the need of the law to adapt to changing times and their responsibility to ensure that it happens in the free and democratic tradition that this country was founded upon.

 

[1] Samuel D. Warren & Louis D. Brandeis, The Right to Privacy, 4(5) HARVARD LAW REVIEW 193, 193 (1890).

[2] Hinailiyas, Right to Privacy under Article 21 and the Related Conflicts (January 22, 2014), LEGAL SERVICES INDIA, available at http://www.legalservicesindia.com/article/article/right-to-privacy-under-article-21-and-the-related-conflicts-1630-1.html (Last visited on June 2, 2016).

[3] V Nalinakanthi, All you wanted to know about the Aadhaar Bill, THE HINDU BUSINESS LINE (March 21, 2016), available at http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/opinion/columns/all-you-wanted-to-know-about-aadhaar-bill/article8381808.ece (Last visited on June 9, 2016).

[4] UIDAI (2009), Aadhaar Generation Progress in India, Aadhaar by Ages & Gender, and Aadhaar by Trend (Bar Graph) available at https://portal.uidai.gov.in/uidwebportal/dashboard.do (Last visited on April 30, 2016).

[5] M.P Sharma & Others v. Satish Chandra, District Magistrate of Delhi & Others, AIR  1954 SC 300 (Supreme Court of India).

[6] Amendment IV, THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 1787.

[7] Kharak Singh vs State of UP, AIR 1963 SC 1295

[8] Id., at 13.

[9] Chinmayi Arun, A Basic Right is in Danger, THE HINDU (July 31, 2015), available at http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/a-basic-right-is-in-danger/article7482874.ece (Last visited on June 9, 2016).

[10] PTI, Right to Privacy cannot be a Fundamental Right: Centre Tells Supreme Court, ECONOMIC TIMES (July 23, 2015), available at http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2015-07-23/news/64773078_1_fundamental-right-attorney-general-mukul-rohatgi-privacy (Last visited on June 7, 2016).

[11] Govind vs State of Madhya Pradesh, (1975) 2 SCC 148 (Supreme Court of India).

[12] Id., at Para 176.

[13] Maneka Gandhi vs Union of India, (1978) 2 SCR 621 (Supreme Court of India).

[14] R.Rajagopal vs State of Tamil Nadu, (1994) 6 SCC 632 (Supreme Court of India).

[15] Id., at 26.

[16] TNN, Learning with the times: What is Aadhaar?, THE TIMES OF INDIA (4th October  2010), available at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Learning-with-the-Times-What-is-Aadhaar/articleshow/6680601.cms (Last visited on June 9, 2016).

[17] Tusha Mittal, Falling between the barcodes, TEHELKA (20th August 2009), available at http://www.tehelka.com/2009/08/falling-between-the-barcodes/?singlepage=1 (Last visited on June 9, 2016).

[18] Seetha, There is a Privacy Issue with the Aadhaar Card, SWARAJAYA (July 29, 2015), available at  http://swarajyamag.com/politics/there-is-a-privacy-issue-with-the-aadhar-card (Last visited on June 9, 2016).

[19] Ruhi Tiwari, Aadhaar legal, valid under Constitution: Centre tells SC, THE INDIAN EXPRESS (February 12, 2015), available at http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/aadhaar-legal-valid-under-constitution-centre-to-tell-sc/ (Last visited on June 9, 2016).

[20] Krishnadas Rajagopal, Don’t insist on Aadhaar, warns SC, THE HINDU (March 16, 2015), available at http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/aadhaar-not-mandatory-sc-reiterates/article6999924.ece (Last visited on June 9, 2016).

[21] Dhananjay Mahapatra, Aadhaar use will be voluntary, says government, THE TIMES OF INDIA (October 15, 2015), available at http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Aadhaar-use-will-be-voluntary-says-government/articleshow/49366557.cms (Last visited on June 9, 2016).

[22] Jean Dreze, The Aadhaar Coup THE HINDU (March 15, 2016), available at http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/lead/jean-dreze-on-aadhaar-mass-surveillance-data collection/article8352912.ece (Last visited on June 9, 2016).

[23] Rajeev Chandrasekhar, A Shaky Aadhaar INDIAN EXPRESS (October 1, 2015), available at http://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/a-shaky-aadhaar/ (Last visited on June 9, 2016).

[24] Usha Ramanathan, Who Owns the UID Database? MONEYLIFE (April 30, 2013), available at http://www.moneylife.in/article/aadhaar-who-owns-the-uid-database-ndashpart-ii/32440.html (Last visited on June 9, 2016).