A Bench headed by Chief Justice of India SA Bobde observed that people’s privacy must be protected in view of the allegation that users data was being shared with other companies.
“There is a concern that circuit of messages is revealed by WhatsApp,” the apex court observed.
The Bench further said that citizens have “great apprehension about loss of their privacy” and they think that their data and chats being shared with others and it has to be looked into.
“You (WhatsApp and Facebook) maybe two or three trillion companies but people value their privacy more than money. It is our duty to protect their privacy,” the Bench told counsels appearing for Facebook and WhatsApp.
The CJI further told the companies’ counsels, “We are telling you what we heard and read. People think that if A sends a message to B and B to C. The circuit of messages is revealed to Facebook.”
During the hearing, senior advocates Kapil Sibal and Arvind Datar appearing for WhatsApp and Facebook respectively denied the allegations and called this “misinformation”.
Senior advocate Shyam Divan, appearing for petitioner Internet Freedom Foundation, told the Bench that there is a great amount of metadata which is shared for profit and is a privacy concern.
“We pray that privacy standards are not lowered for Indian users by WhatsApp… They be barred from sharing data with Facebook,” Divan contended.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appearing for Centre said that the companies cannot share data of users and data must be protected.
The court then issued notice to WhatsApp and Facebook and posted the matter after four weeks.
It has urged the Court to grant an ad-interim order, restraining the sharing of any personal data of users by Whatsapp with Facebook for marketing or other purposes.
It requested the Court to direct the WhatsApp to provide the “same standard of privacy protections to its Indian users as it is providing to users in the European Region”. It also asked Court to direct to provide its users with an opt-out option while using its services, to allow users to opt-out of sharing their data with Facebook for marketing and advertising purpose.
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Maharashtra proposes zero pc interest on farm loans up to Rs 3 lakh
Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], March 8 (ANI): Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar on Monday presented the state budget for 2021-22 in the state assembly and said the government has decided to provide zero per cent interest loans to farmers who take crop loans up to a limit of Rs 3 lakh and make timely repayment.
Pawar said the amount of interest on crop loan will be paid by the government on behalf of farmers. The required funds will be provided by the government, he said.
“Keeping in view the objective to free the farmers from interest burden and prevent them from turning defaulters, the government has decided to provide zero per cent interest loans to farmers who take crop loans up to a limit of Rs 3 lakh and make timely repayment,” he said.
Pawar said that the government has also planned to invest Rs 2,000 crore to strengthen the Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC).
An outlay of Rs 7,350 crore has been proposed for the Rural Development Department.
Maharashtra assembly budget session started on March 1 and will be last till March 10. The session was curtailed due to a surge in COVID-19 cases. (ANI)
President Ram Nath Kovind presents Baton of Honor to Kiran Bedi
New Delhi [India], March 8 (ANI): President Ram Nath Kovind on Monday presented a baton of honour and a letter of appreciation to former Puducherry lieutenant governor Kiran Bedi at Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Kiran Bedi received a Baton of Honor decorated with the emblem of the Indian Republic and a letter of appreciation from President Ram Nath Kovind at Rashtrapati Bhavan.
The former Puducherry lieutenant governor received a Baton of Honor decorated with the emblem of the Indian Republic and the appreciation letter recognizing her service in the Union Territory of Puducherry.
Kiran Bedi was removed as the Lieutenant Governor of Puducherry on February 16 by the President of India and Tamilisai Soundararajan took additional charge as the Lieutenant Governor on February 18. (ANI)
Women have extra qualities of compassion, consistency and courage compared to males: Javadekar on Int’l Women’s Day
New Delhi [India], March 8 (ANI): Prakash Javadekar, Union Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Information and Broadcasting, and Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises, on Monday stated that women have extra qualities of compassion, consistency and courage compared to males, adding that they are hard-working and diligent in their work.
“God didn’t discriminate while creating female and male. My experience is that women have extra qualities of compassion, consistency and courage compared to us males. They are hard working and diligent in their work,” said the Union Minister in his address at the launch of the e-book “The Green Queens of India – Nation’s Pride” on the occasion of International Women’s Day.
He further expressed happiness over the fact that women forest officers in our country are now being recognised.
“Present in this event are women forest officers from across the country. I am glad that women forest officers are being recognised. 280 IFS and more than 5,000 women frontline staff– I welcome them all. God didn’t discriminate while creating female and male,” said Javadekar here today.
He further said, “An oil container ship was driven by females and this is the first example in the world. Women were restricted from getting education and exposure. And we are now seeing in board exams female students perform better because of their consistency.”
The union minister gave further examples of women’s strength and stated that women are present in all fields.
“In Gir, to tranquilise lions, women frontline workers do that. In history, we have examples of Rani Ahilyabai Holkar, Chennamma and Jhansi ki Rani who fought wars. This is women’s strength. Today women are present in all fields.”
The Minister also announced that five frontline workers shall be rewarded next time.
Javadekar also stated that women should get their due as per their capacity, adding that women work with the same force as men in politics.
“It’s a good opportunity today but as per their capacity, women should get their due. In politics, women work with the same force,” remarked Javadekar.
International Women’s Day is celebrated worldwide every year on March 8 to recognise the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women across the globe. This year, the theme for International Women’s Day 2021 is ‘Choose to Challenge’. (ANI)
A day to remember contribution of Indian women including Former PM Indira Gandhi: Anand Sharma
New Delhi [India], March 8 (ANI): Senior Congress leader Anand Sharma on the occasion of International Women’s Day remembered former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and said let us pledge to bring transformative change in social attitudes and end prejudice, discrimination, atrocities and give respect to our women.
“This is a day to celebrate and recall the contribution of Indian women, well documented in history, from freedom fighters, social reformers, scientists, business leaders, sports persons, front-line warriors, astronauts, and armed forces and our illustrious Prime Minister Smt Indira Gandhi,” said Sharma.
“On this day, let us pledge to bring transformative change in social attitudes and end prejudice, discrimination, atrocities and give respect to our women,” he added.
Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi greeted women on the occasion of International Women’s Day and said India takes pride in its many accomplishments. He said it was his government’s honor to work towards furthering women’s empowerment in the country across a wide range of sectors.
“Saluting our indomitable ‘Nari Shakti’ on International Women’s Day! India takes pride in the many accomplishments of the women of our nation. It is our Government’s honor to be getting the opportunity to work towards furthering women empowerment across a wide range of sectors,” PM Modi tweeted. (ANI)
Delhi Jal Board moves SC against Haryana govt over discharge of pollutants into Yamuna
New Delhi [India], March 8 (ANI): Delhi Jal Board (DJB) on Monday moved the Supreme Court against the Haryana government seeking immediate stoppage of discharge of untreated pollutants into the Yamuna river and also to release sufficient water to Delhi.
“Haryana once again has reduced the supply of raw water to Delhi leading to a shortage in water scarcity in Delhi,” Delhi Jal Board Vice Chairman Raghav Chadha said.
“Such behaviour of the Haryana government is not only undesirable but also deeply disappointing. The regular fall in the level of Yamuna river, especially during summers, along with the discharge of pollutants into Yamuna, causing rise in Ammonia levels in the capital, is a matter of grave concern,” Chadha added.
He further requested the Haryana government to take urgent cognisance of the matter and immediate steps to increase the supply of raw water to Delhi and curb the release of untreated effluents into the Yamuna which lead to an increase in Ammonia Level.
Delhi is facing a potential severe water crisis due to the twin factors of high ammonia levels in river Yamuna and the continuously depleting water level at Wazirabad barrage, which supplies drinking water to the Wazirabad, Okhla and Chandrawal water treatment plants of the Delhi Jal Board.
The water levels that should stand at 674.50 feet are now down to an alarming low of 670.4 feet. Raw water is sourced from the river Yamuna and is drawn at Wazirabad Barrage in Delhi. The availability of quantity and quality of raw water at Wazirabad Barrage is dependent on release of water by the Haryana government. (ANI)
Tamil Nadu Polls: Owaisi’s AIMIM forms alliance with Dhinakaran’s AMMK
Chennai (Tamil Nadu) [India], March 8 (ANI): Asaduddin Owaisi-led All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen (AIMIM) has formed an alliance with TTV Dhinakaran’s Amma Makkal Munnettra Kazhagam (AMMK) on Monday for the upcoming Tamil Nadu Assembly elections.
AIMIM will contest three Assembly constituencies including Vaniyambadi, Krishnagiri and Sankarapuram.
Elections to the 234-member Tamil Nadu Assembly will be held on April 6 and the counting of votes will take place on May 2. (ANI)
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