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Madras HC: Installation of CCTV cameras in spas violates Right to Privacy

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Spa Massage Law Insider

Munmun Kaur

Published On: January 05, 2022 at 12:35 IST

The Madras High Court on January 04, stated that installation of CCTV cameras in a spa Violates the Right to ‘Bodily’ privacy of a person and his Right to relax.

The Madurai Bench further stated that the Order passed by another Judge of the Madras Court in 2020, to install CCTV cameras in all spas and massage parlours in Tamil Nadu, is in clear Violation of the Supreme Court’s Order defining Right to Privacy as a Fundamental Right.

Justice Swaminathan humbly differing from the 2020 Madras High Court Order stated that unless the Legislature mandates installation of CCTV cameras at different points, doing that would be Violative of Article 21. Also, the notification issued by the Government contemplates installation of CCTV cameras only at the entry and exit points. It consciously caveats that it would not be Violative to individual’s Privacy.

The Court was hearing a Petition filed by Payel Biswas who is running a spa, named ‘Queen Ayurvedic Cross Spa Centre’ in Trichy, Tamil Nadu. The Petitioner sought a direction to the Trichy Policy to issue a ‘No objection certificate’, since his request to issue license which is made mandatory through 2018 gazette notification was not being worked on. He further sought a restrain on the frequent Police interference in the running of the business.

Justice Swaminathan in his Order stated that a suspicion that immoral activities are taking place in massage centers is not enough reason to intrude in the Right to relax of a person that is a part and parcel of his Fundamental Right to Privacy.

The Court directed the Police to consider the Petitioner’s representation for availing of license on merits within four weeks.