Delhi High Court answer to petitions challenging WhatsApp's privacy policies.

Delhi High Court

Delhi High Court

The Delhi high court said on Thursday that there is "no urgency currently" in hearing petitions questioning WhatsApp's privacy settings since the Facebook-owned messenger app has previously told the court that it "would not transmit data" to Facebook until India implements the planned privacy laws. A two-judge bench, led by Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh, also referred to WhatsApp's reply to it on July 9 stating that it will not "for the time being" ban services of individuals who do not embrace its privacy policy.

During Thursday's session, senior lawyer Kapil Sibal, who was representing WhatsApp, maintained, "We said we will not block." Senior attorney Vivek Sood, who is representing one of the litigants, Harsha Gupta, claimed that the data could still be transmitted under the pre-2021 policy, and demanded that WhatsApp provide a declaration indicating that it will not export the information. "All right, we're considering. There's no use of WhatsApp making statement again and against," The chief justice-led bench noted this, setting August 27 as the date for hearing the appeals against the privacy statement.

On July 9, the high court reviewed WhatsApp's appeal against the Competition Commission of India's investigation into its privacy policy (CCI). WhatsApp's senior lawyer, Harish Salve, has filed a brief on behalf of the company "Our commitment is that I will do nothing till Parliament passes laws. I'll take it if they allow it. Either we belong here or we don't."The privacy policy is being challenged because it allegedly gives WhatsApp "complete access" to a user's online behaviour without any regulatory oversight. "Personal communications continue to be secured by end-to-end encryption," the chat app said in response to the accusation.

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