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Supreme Court to decide WhatsApp’s fate

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Doing WhatsApp may soon be history if the apex court agrees with a PIL filed by a petitioner. The PIL claims that it is helping terrorists and could become a threat to national security.

As of now, the apex court has decided to examine the matter on June 29.

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Sudhir Yadav, an RTI activist from Haryana, has filed a petition in the Supreme Court for banning WhatsApp. Yadav’s argument is that WhatsApp’s end-to-end encryption system used for messaging helps terrorists as these can’t be intercepted.

Even WhatsApp can’t intercept the messages, and probe agencies are having a tough time accessing them, Yadav has contended in his PIL.
According to sources, Yadav had written to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India and the ministry of communications on the issue but did not receive any reply. Therefore, he decided to move the apex court.

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According to a survey by digital analytics firm, Similar Web, WhatsApp has 70 million subscribers in India.

A report from popular app, Jana, says WhatsApp has higher penetration than Facebook’s Messenger application and the Indian messaging app, Hike.

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Earlier, on June 7, The Economic Times had reported that telecom operators had protested that WhatsApp and Skype should be placed under the same regulations as “carriers”.  They point out that voice over internet protocol services are similar to voice calling services provided by telecom operators.

India Legal Bureau

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