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Law sought for protecting privacy, personal data


By farjana - Posted on 01 January 2015

Law sought for protecting privacy, personal data 

Speakers in the national convention on 'Privacy Rights Protection' urged the government to enact a data protection law to secure privacy rights and personal data.  

The convention was organised by rights-based organisations VOICE and Privacy International, in association with the Bangladesh Manobadhikar Sangbadik Forum, Equity and Justice Working Group, Susashoner Jonno Procharavijan-SUPRO (Campaign for Good Governance), Online Knowledge Society, Campaign on Citizens Rights to Information at the National Press Club in the city.

The convention made an outline of a draft 'Data Protection Law'.

Ahmed Swapan Mahmud, executive director of VOICE presented the summary of the draft law while Advocate Tanzim Islam and a law department teacher of the Eastern University Saimum Reza Piash highlighted some points of the draft and called for enacting the law to ensure citizens' rights to privacy.

The speakers said a fresh law has to be enacted to defend privacy rights, as ensured by Article 43 of the Bangladesh Constitution.

They said before making the law, the definition of 'personal information' should be clarified considering the national context and spirit.

"Protecting individual's personal information has become more crucial than ever before. Privacy is essential for enabling individuals to express themselves freely. But the existing legal framework does not fully recognise the rights to privacy and data protection", they pointed out.

Member of the Parliamentary Standing Committee for Special Rights Rustam Ali Faraji MP said privacy rights must be protected and the government should take appropriate measures to enact a law in this regard.

"Rights to privacy can be subject to restrictions or limitations under certain exceptional circumstances as a part of state surveillance for the purposes of administration of criminal justice, prevention of crimes or combating terrorism," he added.

Barrister Jyotirmoy Barua criticised interception by  agencies that was imposed through an amendment brought in 2006. He said interception flouts privacy rights and hence violates human rights.

He said the state and the private agencies should have a legal limit of seeking information from individuals and they must be held accountable.

"Since communication surveillance, such as mobile and email interceptions, violates rights to privacy, the government should withdraw or limit intelligence agencies' authority over personal communication of individuals."  

Chief Moderator of EquityBD Rezaul Karim Chowdhury said, according to the Right to information Act, everyone has the right to get information about all the aspects of the state agencies and organisations only other than the issues related to national security or public interest. But no one has the right to intervene in one's personal information unless he or she willingly discloses it.

Convener of Nagarik Oikko Mahmudur Rahman Manna said there must be a clear demarcation between privacy rights and right to information so that the laws do not overlap and create bewilderment while dealing with issues.

Senior journalist Saleem Samad said surveillance hinders freedom of expression and it is contradictory to the constitutional obligation.

Ahmed Swapan Mahmud, while moderating the convention, said privacy rights and right to information never confront each other.

http://www.thefinancialexpress-bd.com/2016/01/30/73784

 

Enact law to protect privacy rights, personal data: Convention

December 31, 2014 07:21:37 pm in Bangladesh    Print Dhaka, Dec 31 (UNB) - Speakers at a national convention on ‘Privacy Rights Protection’ on Wednesday urged the government to enact a data protection law to secure privacy rights and personal data.

The convention was organised by rights organisations VOICE and Privacy International in association with Bangladesh Manobadhikar Sangbadik Forum, Equity and Justice Working Group, Susashoner Jonno Procharavijan-SUPRO (Campaign for Good Governance), Online Knowledge Society, Campaign on Citizens Rights to Information at the National Press Club, Dhaka.

The convention proposed a draft of the law as ‘Data Protection Law’. The summary of the draft law has been presented by Ahmed Swapan Mahmud, executive director of VOICE, while Advocate Tanzim Islam and Law Department teacher of Eastern University Saimum Reza Piash highlighted some points of the draft, according to a press release.

 Addressing the convention, Rustam Ali Foraji, MP, said privacy rights must be protected while the government can take appropriate measure to enact a law.

 However, he also mentioned that right to privacy can be subject to restrictions or limitations under certain exceptional circumstances such as state surveillance measures for the purposes of administration of criminal justice as well as prevention of crime or combating terrorism.

 Barrister Jyotirmoy Barua criticised interception by the agencies that was imposed through an amendment brought in 2006.

 He said that interception confronts privacy rights and hence violates human rights. State and private agencies should have a legal limit of seeking information from individuals and they must be held accountable, Barrister Jyotirmoy added.

 He urged the government to withdraw or limit the intelligence agencies’ authority over the personal communication of individuals.

 According to Right to Information Act, everyone has the right to get information about the all the aspects of the state agencies and organisations only other than the issues that have concerns related to national security or public interest, Rezaul Karim Chowdhury, Chief Moderator of EquityBD, said, adding that but no one has the right to intervene one’s personal information unless he or she willingly discloses them.

 Mahmudur Rahman Manna, convener of Nagarik Oikya, expressed his vigilant views concerning privacy rights prevailing in Bangladesh.

 He also emphasised the necessity of a nationwide campaign for awareness of the citizens so that the process can be more participatory.

- See more at: http://unb.com.bd/privacy-rights-protection#sthash.Rc01YyM3.dpuf