A day after Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal tore the draft for regulation of CCTVs installation, issued by Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal, the office of the LG has released a clarification on the issue of licensing mechanism.
The Delhi LG has clarified that the draft rules call for a reporting mechanism and not a licensing mechanism. "It is reiterated that the draft rules put out for public suggestions/objections/feedback by the Committee formed under the Principal Secretary (Home) have only prescribed a reporting mechanism for CCTVs and NOT a licensing mechanism," said the statement.
Without naming Kejriwal or the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), the statement alleged that “misconception is being spread about the draft rules for regulation of installation of CCTVs that the draft rules prescribe a licensing mechanism”.
"The fact that more than two lakh cameras have already been installed in the city without coordination, highlights the need for a proper framework and information mechanism so that all CCTVs in public places installed in Delhi work optimally with a common objective of law enforcement, women safety, prevention and investigation of crimes and balance the same with the need to protect privacy while ensuring clear responsibility and accountability for all CCTVs installed including for images and data stored," read the statement further.
It further said that there have been instances of misuse of CCTVs for “intrusion and compromises on privacy of individuals”. The statement added, “The use of the surveillance camera system should not be permitted to become a tool to violate privacy of individuals which has been held to be a fundamental right by the Hon’ble Supreme Court.”
The LG has pointed that similar regulatory frameworks exist in other countries as well and in India as well, Justice Shrikrishna Committee said that privacy concerns need to be addressed without compromising with security and safety aspects.
During a public meeting on Sunday, Delhi CM Kejriwal tore a report from the LG, claiming that it called for obtaining a license from police even if anyone installed a CCTV camera in individual capacity.
"Licence means 'give money and take licence'. It is the will of the people that this report should be torn," said Kejriwal before shredding the report to pieces.
Responding to it, the LG's office had said,"The fact that more than two lakh cameras have already been installed in the city without coordination highlights the need for a proper framework and information mechanism so that all CCTVs in public places installed in Delhi work optimally."