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SC asks Centre to frame guidelines on phone-tapping

Last Updated: Wednesday, May 11, 2011 - 21:51

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday asked the
Centre to frame guidelines for interception of telephone
conversations in order to prevent illegal phone tapping by
service providers.
"The central government must frame certain statutory
guidelines in this regard to prevent interception of telephone
conversations on unauthorised communication," a bench of
justices G S Singhvi and A K Ganguly said.

The bench also said the telecom companies should also
take due care and pulled up Reliance Infocom for tapping the
telephones of controversial leader Amar Singh on the basis
of a forged letter.

"This court is of the opinion that the service provider
has to act as a responsible agency and cannot act on any
communication," the court said.

"In view of the public nature of the function of a
service provider, it is inherent in its duty to act carefully
and with a sense of responsibility. This court is thus
constrained to observe that in discharging the said duty,
Reliance Infocom has failed," the court said.
"Sanctity and regularity in official communication in
such matters must be maintained, especially when the service
provider is taking the serious step of intercepting the
telephone conversations of a person and by doing so is
invading the privacy right of the person concerned, which is a
fundamental right protected under the Constitution, as has
been held by this court," the bench said.


First Published: Wednesday, May 11, 2011 - 21:51
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