Releasing photos, details of Asha Kiran inmates breach of privacy

 thehindu.com  11/10/2019 19:44:24 

The Delhi High Court has asked the city government to respond to a petition challenging its decision to disclose photographs and IQ scores of 59 mentally-challenged women lodged in Asha Kiran homes in the Capital.

A Bench of Chief Justice D.N. Patel and Justice C. Hari Shankar issued the notice on a plea by NGO Prahari Sahyog Association, which has contended that releasing the photographs and IQ scores of the women amounts to discrimination.

The HC also questioned the purpose behind the display of Intelligence Quotient (IQ) scores of the women in the advertisement published in newspapers.

The Delhi governments counsel told the High Court that the purpose behind the advertisement was to reunite the women with their families.

The High Court queried how the families were to identify the women on the basis of IQ scores.

The petition has also contended that the advertisement violates provisions of the Right of Persons With Disabilities (RPWD) Act and the United Nations Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), which prohibit the release of the identity of such individuals.

The petition has contended that the governments decision violates the right to privacy and dignity of the 59 women. It said that one of the women was admitted to an Asha Kiran home in 1971.

The NGO, which claims to fight for the upliftment of fundamental and civil rights of Persons With Disabilities (PWD), has sought directions to the Centre to frame guidelines to trace families of the women living in Asha Kiran homes and to protect the privacy of such individuals.

It has also sought a direction to the Delhi government to compensate the 59 women whose identities were revealed as a result of the advertisement.

The petition has also urged the court to direct the Delhi government to take action against officials who issued the advertisement in violation of the RPWD Act.

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