The Delhi High Court on Tuesday has asked Centre to treat plea as a representation seeking enactment of laws and guidelines regulating the conduct of private detectives and their agencies in the country.
The Division Bench headed by Acting Chief Justice Vipin Sanghi, disposed of the petition which highlighted the atrocities of private detectives due to their unregulated modus operandi inasmuch as it violates the right to privacy of citizens enshrined under Article 21 of the Constitution.
The Bench noted thus:
“In the outset we may observe that it is not for the Court to direct for framing of the new law. No mandamus in this regard can be issued.”
The Bench, however, asked the Centre to treat the petition as a representation and in light thereof, to examine the aspect whether it is feasible to frame a law for the purpose of registration and regulation of the activity of private detection.
The instant petition has been filed by Advocates Preeti Singh, Sunklan Porwal and Shubham Kaushik, on behalf of one Radha Bisht, who claimed to be a victim of unregularized activities of a private detective appointed by her husband to tail and harass her.
The plea pointed out that on account of non-passage of the Private Detective Agencies (Regulation) Bill, 2007, which remained pending before the Parliament and was allowed to expire thereby, there exists no law that could govern the activities of private detectives and their agencies. “Due to such absence of any law governing the activities of private detectives, people being victim of abuse, violated of their right to privacy, have no statutory law to invoke against the agencies and make them liable.
Such inability to make private detective agencies liable before any curt of law or authority enable them to operate in any manner which they feel to be suitable for themselves,” read the plea.
Referring to the decision of the Apex Court in the case of “K.S Puttaswamy vs. Union of India”, the petitioner averred that by advertising and taking pride in how adept they are at planting spyware to track each and every activity of the victim, the private detectives and their agencies violate informational privacy’ of citizens.
“Lack of regulation of private detectives and their agencies has emboldened them to flout the law and commit multiple illegal activities to meet their ends”
-the plea stated thus.