The Delhi High Court issued a notice to the center on Thursday, requesting instructions to cancel Articles 3 and 4 of the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics) Rules 2021 because it is unconstitutional and exceeds its authority in the IT Act 2000.
On Thursday, Judges DN Patel and Jyoti Singh sought a response from the Indian Federation through the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, and plan to conduct further hearings on the matter on September 13.
Petitioner and practicing lawyer Uday Bedi, as a social media user, challenged Articles 3 and 4 of the 2021 Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Code of Ethics) Rules, which became effective on February 25, 2021 WhatsApp, Instagram, Twitter, Telegram and other platforms.
It is directly affected by the entry into force of the appealed rule, and also has a profound impact on the basic rights of petitioners guaranteed by Articles 14, 19 and 21 of the 1950 Indian Constitution, namely: the request states that freedom of speech and expression and the right to privacy.
The petition pointed out that with the entry into force of the appealed rule, the petitioner’s various clients now have different ways of contacting him on social media platforms (such as Whatsapp, Telegram, etc.), which are usually used to discuss matters related to his case. Sensitive details. Given the deep and universal powers arbitrarily handed over to private companies operating social media platforms/intermediaries under the appealed rules.
It further pointed out that the challenged rule may be abolished because it was formulated out of malice and ignoring the principle of separation of powers and checks and balances in the form of democratic government.
According to the challenged rules, the respondent grants the private SMI the power to accept and handle complaints received by private individuals, and to delete access to any information available on its platform on a voluntary basis under the conditions specified in Rule 3(1) Rights (b) and 3(1)(d) are satisfied.
The power to place petitioners and other users under constant surveillance also has no reasonable connection with the goals of the IT Act of 2000 and therefore violates Article 14 of the Indian Constitution. The IT Act of 2000 did not give intermediaries full powers in any way. Therefore, these rules are beyond the scope of the IT Act of 2000, and the sub-authorization power that the respondent has no right to make rules exceeds the IT Act, 2000, please read.
The Delhi High Court also reviewed several petitions, challenging various parts of the newly revised IT rules introduced by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, including numerous digital news portals and personal defenses.