The way propagation of phone conversation by the media is not proper: High Court

Staff Correspondent,, Dhaka
ছবি: সংগৃহীত

ছবি: সংগৃহীত

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The way phone conversations are propagated by the media is not right. The court made the remarks during a hearing on a writ petition seeking necessary directions to prevent eavesdropping over the phone on Monday (September 13).

High Court bench of Justice M. Enayetur Rahim and Justice Mostafizur Rahman has set September 19 as the date for the order on the writ.

The court said that just as eavesdropping on personal matters is not right, so is the way the media glorifies it. For this, everyone including journalists and BTRC need to be careful. The court said the phone conversation caused a lot of damage to the person concerned after it was leaked to the media. But who records these phone conversations? Any one of the two parties can be a party, the third party can also be. What is the benefit of third party, I think BTRC needs to see it.

Lawyer Mohammad Shishir Monir appeared for the writ petitioner. The state was represented by Attorney General AM Amin Uddin, accompanied by Deputy Attorney General Bipul Bagmar.

At the hearing, lawyer Mohammad Shishir Monir said it was the responsibility of the BTRC to ensure the protection of the privacy of telecommunications in accordance with Section 30 (f) of the Telecommunications Regulation Act. But it is noticed that such phone conversations are leaking every day. However, according to the constitution and customary law, the commission is not fulfilling its responsibilities. He said phone conversations of many important people, starting from the head of government, have been leaked. If this continues, neither I nor you, the Attorney General, are safe. No one knows when or how the phone call will be leaked. Husband-wife phone conversation is being leaked. But no role of BTRC can be seen in preventing it.

In reply, Attorney General AM Amin Uddin said that no phone conversation was leaked in the case of any of the writ petitioners. As a result, how did they become affected? Those phone conversations that have been leaked here can seek redress by applying to BTRC. The law also provides for the opportunity to file civil cases in lower courts. Therefore this writ cannot proceed. So it is Rejection able. He said that when there is a phone conversation between two people, one of them can record it and leak it. What does BTRC have to do here? In that case, the aggrieved person can also file a case under the Digital Security Act. In other words, there is an opportunity in the law for the victim to seek redressal.

At this stage, the court said, is it possible to prevent this phone conversation? Shishir Monir said, possible. The digital world is moving forward. Bangladesh is not backward either. We sent a legal notice. But I did not get an answer.