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linking social media profiles with Aadhaar

Agency, New Delhi
16/09/2019   0 Comments

The Supreme Court on Friday said the issue of linking of social media profiles with Aadhaar needs to be decided at the earliest.

A bench of justices Deepak Gupta and Aniruddha Bose said, "At this stage we do not know whether we could decide this issue or the high court will decide".

The bench further said it will not go into the merits of the case and would simply decide the transfer petition filed by Facebook seeking transfer of such cases pending before high courts of Madras, Bombay and Madhya Pradesh to the top court.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Centre, told the bench that it has no objection to transfer of the cases from high courts to the top court.

The Tamil Nadu government had on Thursday claimed in the apex court that Facebook Inc and other social media companies were not complying with Indian laws, resulting in "increased lawlessness" and difficulties in "detecting crimes".

It had sought modification of the August 20 order of the apex court directing the Madras High Court to continue hearing of pleas for linkage of social media profiles with biometric ID Aadhaar but restraining it from passing any effective orders.

The high court is at an advanced stage of hearing but due to the apex court's August 20 order, it had deferred the hearings on those petitions, the state government had said.

Referring to different criminal cases, the state government had said local law enforcement authorities have attempted to seek information from these companies for investigation and detection of crimes on several occasions.

It had said that these companies ask authorities to send letters rogatory "despite operating on Indian soil" and have in all cases "failed to provide complete information".

The state government had also submitted that the transfer petition of Facebook Inc filed before the court seeking to transfer cases from Madras, Bombay and Madhya Pradesh High Courts is replete with "false and misleading averments" and is a blatant attempt to misguide the Court for oblique motives.

On August 20, the apex court had sought response from the Centre, Google, WhatsApp, Twitter, YouTube and others on Facebook Inc's plea seeking transfer of cases related to linking of social media accounts with Aadhaar, pending in different high courts to the apex court.

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