Karnataka High Court Allows Amendment of Petition in Aarogya Setu Case: Update on Petition Challenging Aarogya Setu's Voluntary-Mandatory Status and Lack of A Specific Legislation

SFLC.IN's advisory board member Mr. Anivar A Aravind filed a petition in the Karnataka High Court challenging the mandatory nature  of Aarogya Setu and invasion of privacy rights in the absence of a specific legislation governing data collected by it. SFLC.IN's team has been assisting Senior Advocate Mr. Colin Gonsalves, Advocate Siddharth Baburao and Advocate Ali Zia Kabir in the matter. 

The petition was listed for hearing today i.e. 17.07.2020 before the division bench of Hon'ble Chief Justice Abhay Okay and Justice M. Nagarprasanna. Before this, the Central Government had stated it on record that Aarogya Setu is not mandatory for air or rail services

In today's hearing, the arguments were made by Senior Advocate Mr. Colin regarding the admissibility of application to the amendments to the petition and impleadment of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation as respondent parties. Recently, the Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation had made it mandatory for commuters to install Aarogya Setu and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare had released a SoP making Aarogya Setu mandatory for employees in all offices.

The amendments to the petition included the recent updates in the Aarogya Setu App which allow sharing of user data with third parties, deletion of user's account within 30 days, and health status of persons with whom the user came in contact with. The amendment also raised the point that Aarogya Setu's Android Source Code is partially open source and iOS source code is yet to be released in public domain.

The Karnataka High Court has allowed amendments to the petition and has given time until August 14 to the respondents to file their responses and objections.