WhatsApp Files Lawsuit Against Indian Government Over New IT Rules, Alleges Rules Infringe On Users Privacy


Popular instant messaging app WhatsApp is having a tough time in India. The company’s new privacy policy has stoked a war with the government. After it failed to follow the new IT rules for operations in the country, the company has toed the legal line. It has filed a lawsuit against the Indian government. The case is lodged in the High Court of Delhi in the country’s capital city New Delhi. WhatsApp said that the privacy of users’ is in its DNA. It said that the app cannot trace the chats of its users. Doing so will amount to a violation of the right to privacy. According to WhatsApp’s claim, the Indian government asked it to keep a fingerprint of all messages that are sent on the platform.

WhatsApp said that chat traceability will break its end-to-end encryption promise. It will also undermine civilians’ right to privacy. The Facebook-owned app said that it is against rules that comprise the privacy of users. The company said that it is willing to engage with the Indian government to find a practical solution to the problem. The country’s Electronics and Information Technology Ministry had granted time till May 25 to WhatsApp and other social media platforms to abide by the new IT rules. The government said that those failing to abide by the rules will invite punitive action. WhatsApp in its lawsuit said that the new IT rules designed by the government infringe on the privacy of users. It said that traceability could give a rise to serious misuse.

WhatsApp and the Indian government are at loggerheads over the messaging app’s new privacy policy. The Indian government had asked the company to drop its new privacy policy. However, the app decided to implement its news policy despite the government’s warning. WhatsApp had in February deferred the implementation following criticism from several quarters. The government in February announced new IT rules for social media companies. It asked them to remove the offending content immediately and set up a grievance redressal cell among others. India is WhatsApp’s largest market. It has more than 400 million active users in the country.