‘Phones of riots accused have private content’

A Delhi court on Thursday raised concerns over the privacy of several accused in the Delhi riots larger conspiracy case after noting that the phones of some of them had “obscene material”, which if provided to the co-accused would have an impact on their personal lives.

Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat was hearing an application filed by the counsels of some of the accused under Section 207 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (Cr.PC), which sought supply of evidence and all material relied upon by the prosecution in the case in which former JNU student Umar Khalid is among the 18 accused.

Special Public Prosecutor Amit Prasad said that personal data contained in the mobile phones of the accused cannot be supplied to others in view of privacy concerns.

For this purpose, he also showed to the court two sealed envelopes which contained photographs taken from the mobile phones. “These photographs contain nude pictures, private intimate moments, and other self-made porn videos by accused,” ASJ Rawat said in the order.

SPP Prasad further said that in view of this, the same cannot be provided to anyone else.

“It appears that there is a question of right to privacy of the accused and supply of any such data, as asked for, will have an impact on personal lives of accused and thus, supplying of any photographs or video as contained in the mobile phones of accused to any other accused or even to the counsels of the accused would not be possible,” the order said.

In response, the counsels of the accused said that it was a case of conspiracy for which they would require the contents of mobile phones of other accused who are stated to be related to each other and “in the interest of the defence of the accused, this issue of supply of personal data, including whatever video or photographs as are available in the mobile phones, should not be closed and be kept open”.

The court posted the case for November 23 when it will scrutinise the documents for the purpose of Section 207 of the CrPC.

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Printable version | Jan 19, 2022 9:19:54 AM |

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