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‘Can’t put a chip on lawmakers,’ SC dismisses PIL to digitally monitor all MPs/MLAs

By Harshvardhan Sharma      01 March, 2024 05:04 PM      0 Comments
Cant put a chip on lawmakers SC dismisses PIL to digitally monitor all MPs MLAs

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Friday rejected a plea for a direction that all the MPs and MLAs should be digitally monitored, saying they have a right to privacy and such kind of surveillance is done for felons.

"How the court could pass an order to put chips on the lawmakers, which is done for felons," a bench of Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud and Justices J B Pardiwala and Manoj Misra asked the petitioner.

The PIL by Surinder Nath Kundra sought a direction to digitally monitor all MPs and MLAs in the country.

“We cannot put some chips on their legs and hands to monitor what they do. We do it only in the case of a convicted felon, who you apprehend is likely to flee justice, how can we digitally monitor, there is something called right to privacy,” the court reminded Kundra, who was appearing-in-person.

Petitioner submitted court should allow him to present his case why he is seeking this direction.

In a warning, the court told him that he is utilising public time and may suffer the cost.

"It is not our ego, it is public time and there are so many other matters," the bench told Kundra.

The petitioner, however, contended that the people of the country elect these MPs and MLAs and their job is to present the people.

“After getting elected under the Representation of People Act, these MPs/MLAs start behaving as rulers,” Kundra claimed.

The bench said the petitioner cannot say this about every MP/MLA.

"You may have particular grievances against one person and you cannot make a charge against all MPs,” the bench told him.

Kundra said the people are the ultimate authority of the nation under the Preamble of the Constitution.

"MPs/MLAs are public servants and the ultimate authority for making laws with the public and not the servants," he said.

"How will individual citizens make laws? In democratic countries, laws have to be moved/passed in the Parliament by elected representatives of the people,” the bench asked.

“Tomorrow, people will say why do we need judges, we will decide justice on the streets. We find somebody is a pickpocket and according to us this person should be killed. We do not want that to happen. Therefore, every democratic society has judges who decide in an institutional way,” the bench said.

Kundra claimed that the Constitution is under danger.

Rejecting his plea, the bench said, "MPs/MLAs have their own life at their home and they are with their families, do we put some chips on their shoulders to monitor them 24/7."

Kundra said those who are so touchy about their privacy should apply for the job.

The court finally dismissed the plea but spared the petitioner of any cost.
 



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