Meghalaya law student’s plea in HC against mandatory imposition of contact tracing apps

The state had developed its own set of apps to trace people who were advised home quarantine


A law student in Meghalaya has filed a petition in the high court challenging the state government’s order on mandatory usage of two contact tracing apps in the state. The petition states that this amounts to violation of data privacy and personal autonomy.

The Meghalaya government, on March 29 issued an order that mandated all persons who have been recommended home quarantine /isolation to download and use ‘Corontine’ and ‘Stay Safe Meghalaya’ mobile applications.

Jade J. Lyngdoh, a student of NLU, Jodhpur is the petitioner and he has contended that the government has not released any protocol / guidelines with respect to collection, processing, storage, sharing and anonymisation of the data collected by these apps.

The petition says that the mandatory imposition of the apps without statutory backing and privacy policy constitutes disproportionate invasion of constitutional rights and hence needs to be declared as “illegal, unconstitutional and arbitrary”. The petition is yet to be assigned a hearing date.

As reported by The Telegraph, under the provisions of the Meghalaya Epidemic Diseases, COVID-19 Regulations, 2020, the government had ordered that all persons who have been recommended for home isolation/quarantine by the state government based on registration on the portal or those who have registered on the 108 helpline or through other helplines, should download the Stay Safe Meghalaya app and agree to share their location till they are under home isolation.

Along the same lines as these apps in Meghalaya is the Aarogya Setu app which started off as being voluntary, then started being imposed on government employees, then air travellers and so on. In its last Lockdown 4.0 order, the Ministry of Home Affairs stated that the app should be downloaded by all employees of private establishments on best effort basis. After many questions were raised on the privacy of data on this app, the MHA made it an open source app enabling cyber security experts to audit the app and find any potential flaws in it.


Did MHA sneak in Aarogya Setu into our lives through a back door?

Aarogya Setu app in hot water due to MHA’s order of mandatory downloads

Bombay HC advises lawyers and litigants to download Aarogya setu App



Related Articles