The latest incident regarding recording of moments of privacy in girls’ hostels (by way of multimedia message service) and then sharing the same with another person, has shocked the entire region and is a big blow to the Government’s historical initiative for women empowerment, said AJAY JAGGA, Adv Ex member, Distt Consumer Protection Council, UT in a written letter to Banwari Lal Purohit Hon’ble Administrator Chandigarh Administration.
Jagga said that these incidents occurred in the past also, but perhaps the needful was not done. Even the recording in changing stores, shocked people, few years back. The fact of the matter is that such acts of recording of moments of privacy and then sharing the same with the third person, is an offence / cybercrime under the
i) Information and Technology Act, 2000
ii) violation of the article 21 of the Constitution of India i.e. Protection of life and personal liberty (which includes privacy).
In today’s world, violation of privacy is a big issue all over the world, as these kind of recordings, are perhaps sold.
He further added that however, for the security of boarders, instructions may be issued for
i) an audit to find out the presence of any kind of recording equipment, may be suggested to all the hostels, educational institutions and then in the changing rooms ( should be made a regular feature); the management then should submit audit report of concerned officials of Chandigarh Administration (in case of the University, concerned office of University)
ii) issuing all visitor identity cards to girls hostels with RFID chips to record the movement of the visitor
iii) Entry and exit including reception/lobby is supposed to be under the cc tv, with the condition of a mandatory annual audit regarding functioning of these cameras
The entire exercise should be ordered to be done in a time bound manner, after discussing the things at the level of top bureaucrats of the Administration.
Jagga said that the boarders, apart from being students, pay the fees for hostels, so they are consumers as well and deserve the best possible consumer protection against such exploitation, like recording of moments of privacy. The laxity in the measures is not in tune with the Hon’ble Prime Minister’s initiative for women empowerment and women led development, he said.