The Delhi High Court said on Thursday that it is not in a hurry to listen to requests to challenge WhatsApp’s new privacy policy because the instant messaging platform has issued a statement stating that it will not “transmit data to Facebook” until the personal data protection bill is finalized.

The US-based company also notified the High Court that it will temporarily block the accounts of those who do not accept the privacy policy.

Chief Justice DN Patel and Jyoti Singh said that given the company’s position, it will hear the request on August 27.

“They have issued a statement that they will not transfer until the personal data protection bill is finalized. There is another thing in this court, and they have issued a statement in it. Now this is not so urgent,” the court said.

Kapil Sibal, a senior lawyer who appeared in court for WhatsApp, told the court that, based on the position of his clients, the accounts of those who do not accept the new policy will be deleted for the time being.

“We said we would not stop,” Sibal said.

Vivek Sood, a senior lawyer who appeared in court on behalf of one of the petitioners Harsha Gupta, emphasized that even if the 2021 policy is shelved, data can still be transmitted in accordance with the policy before 2021.

“Let them declare that they will not transmit data,” Sude requested to the court.

Defense lawyer Manohar Lal, who appeared in court on behalf of another petitioner, Chaitanya Rohilla, said that his dissatisfaction had nothing to do with the personal information sent through the platform, but with the metadata shared by Facebook.

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Megan, a lawyer who challenged the policy with the other two, also raised questions about user privacy.

“Okay, we are considering it. (WhatsApp) is no use making statements again and again,” the court said.

On July 9, when the court heard requests from WhatsApp and Facebook to investigate its privacy policy by the Competition Commission of India, the instant messaging platform told the court that it will not force users to choose its new privacy policy until the data protection bill takes effect. Because it has been shelved.

“The promise is that I will not do anything until the parliamentary law is passed. If the parliament allows it, I will own it. If not, then bad luck…I have cancelled it until the parliament enacts the law. We either adapt or don’t adapt,” said Harish Salve, a senior lawyer who appeared on WhatsApp.

The Personal Data Protection Act aims to regulate the use of personal data by the government and private companies. The parliamentary joint committee to review the bill has been extended to the monsoon meeting to submit a report.

Rohilla, who was the first to challenge the privacy policy, argued that the updated privacy policy violates the privacy rights of users under the constitution. They can accept or exit the application, but they cannot choose not to share their data with others. Other Facebook-owned or third-party applications.

The request claims that WhatsApp’s new privacy policy allows full access to users’ online activities without any government supervision.

In its response, WhatsApp claimed that the new policy will not affect users’ privacy because personal information continues to be protected by end-to-end encryption.

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WhatsApp also challenged the maintainability of the writ petition against it.

On the other hand, the central government earlier argued that the platform tried to force its users to agree to the new privacy policy before the Data Protection Act became law and was obtaining “deceptive consent” and urged the court to restrict WhatsApp from implementing its new privacy policy. .


Does WhatsApp’s new privacy policy mean the end of your privacy? We discussed this issue on the gadget 360 podcast Orbital. Orbital is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you receive podcasts.