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Name & shame controversy: No law can back your actions, SC snubs UP govt

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The Uttar Pradesh government’s decision to “name and shame” people accused of damaging public property during citizenship protests by erecting hoardings across the city can’t be backed by any existing laws, the Supreme Court remarked on Thursday. The remark came from Justice Uday Umesh Lalit who was part of a vacation bench hearing the Yogi Adityanath administration’s appeal against an Allahabad High Court order directing the immediate removal of the hoardings erected by the Lucknow district administration.
The Allahabad High Court said the display of the hoardings was “unwarranted interference” in privacy and directed the government to remove them by March 16.
The apex court’s vacation bench suggested that a larger bench should decide whether the state had the right to put them up. But Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who appeared for the Uttar Pradesh government in the Supreme Court, argued that citizens waived their right to privacy by committing an act in public.
In the landmark Justice K.S. Puttaswamy vs Union of India case in which the Supreme Court ruled in 2017 that privacy is a fundamental right accepted this concept, Mehta argued. Meanwhile, advocate CU Singh, who appeared for one of the people whose names were displayed in public, argued that there should be no stay on the Allahabad High Court’s instruction to remove the posters.

UP moves SC against HC’s order to remove ‘name & shame’ posters in Lucknow