HC judge recuses from hearing plea against updated privacy policy of WhatsApp

India antitrust watchdog orders probe into WhatsApp's new privacy policy
Reuters | The 21-page antitrust order came as WhatsApp is expanding its digital payment services to millions of Indians.

HC judge recuses from hearing plea against updated privacy policy of WhatsApp

A Delhi High Court judge on Friday recused herself from hearing a plea challenging the updated privacy policy of messaging app WhatsApp.

Justice Prathiba M Singh also expressed displeasure over an email sent on behalf of Facebook or WhatsApp stating that she ought not to hear the matter.

Also Read WhatsApp faces first legal challenge in India over privacy

There was no need for such an email as she was not going to hear the matter, she said.

Senior advocates Kapil Sibal and Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for Facebook and WhatsApp, said the email was being withdrawn unconditionally.

Justice Singh said however that she cannot hear the matter and directed the registry of the high court to list it before an appropriate bench on January 18 subject to orders of the Chief Justice.

She observed that the matter appeared to be in the nature of a PIL.

The petition, by a lawyer, has contended that the updated privacy policy violates users right to privacy under the Constitution.

The plea has claimed that the new privacy policy of WhatsApp allows full access into a user’s online activity without there being any supervision by the government.

Under the new policy, users can either accept it or exit the app, but they cannot opt not to share their data with other Facebook-owned or third party apps.


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