NEW DELHI: Recreantly, the AAP Government told Delhi High Court that installation of the CCTV cameras in all the government schools of the State is a considered decision. The Government has also filed an affidavit before Delhi High Court which states that the validity of the decision has to be considered keeping in mind the background in which the decision was taken.
In its affidavit the government said –
“It is submitted that reports of child abuses in the schools of Delhi/NCR had surfaced further highlighting the need to ramp up the security provisions in the schools for the safety of the children,”
The government has also mentioned
about the privacy of students and preservation of their dignity under Article 21, in light of the Delhi government’s move.
A division bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh had in February this year issued notice on the petition and sought the Delhi government’s response.
The State government, in its reply filed through Additional Standing Counsel Gautam Narayan, told the Court that the plan was deliberated and reviewed for more than two years.
Therefore, the decision for installation of CCTV was not a knee-jerk reaction to the reports of child abuse received in 2017.
Further, it was contended that the installation of cameras does not infringe the right to privacy as the same is not absolute and would always be subject to reasonable restrictions.
“A reasonable expectation of privacy, though not surrendered in a public place, however, the expectation itself would vary from an intimate zone to a public space like a classroom,” said the affidavit.
The same reliefs had already been agitated before the Supreme Court and was subsequently dismissed, the State added. In the case of Amber Tickoo v GNCTD, the petitioner had claimed that the installation of cameras would compromise the safety of female students but the top court had declined relief.
In view of the above, as well as the prevalent social context, it was submitted that the action of the State government could not be seen as disproportionate to the aim sought to be achieved.