Supreme Court refuses to stay NPR

New Delhi: The Supreme Court today issued notices to Central government on fresh petitions moved before it challenging the constitutional validity of Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), National Register of Citizens (NRC) and National Population Register (NPR) exercise.

The court issued notice after it refused to stay the NPR process and tagged the pleas along with other 140 CAA petitions filed earlier which are scheduled to be heard.

The Supreme Court last week refused to grant interim stay on the CAA, NRC and NPR, saying that the government is free to implement the measures, in a setback to those opposing them.

A bench headed by Chief Justice SA Bobde and comprising Justices S Abdul Nazeer and Sanjiv Khanna had concluded the hearing after granting the Centre four weeks to reply.

It asked the High Courts not to entertain any plea on CAA until the apex court finished deciding the matter before it.
The NPR petition has said that the information that will be collected for the National Population Register (NPR) is not guaranteed to be protected from misuse.

The petitioner said, “Information being collected under the Citizenship (Registration of Citizens and Issue of National Identity Cards) Rules, 2003 is not guaranteed any protection from misuse under the said rules. This is materially different than the information collected for Aadhaar or the Census, wherein the information/data collected is guaranteed protection and security by way of statute.”

The petition has also raised concerns that such data may lead to ‘unsanctioned state surveillance of private citizens’.
“The collection of such data may lead to possible unsanctioned state surveillance of private citizens who have not engaged in unlawful activity,” the petition said.

It added: “Entire exercise of creation and updation of the National Population Register is a gross invasion of privacy of private citizens.”