New Delhi/Mumbai — India’s top court unanimously ruled on Thursday that individual privacy is a fundamental right, a verdict that will have an impact on everything, from the way companies handle personal data to the roll-out of the world’s largest biometric ID card programme. A nine-member bench of India’s supreme court announced the ruling in a major setback for the Narendra Modi-led government, which argued that privacy was not a fundamental right protected by the constitution. The court ordered that two earlier rulings by large benches, which said privacy was not fundamental in 1954 and 1962, now stood over-ruled, and it declared privacy was "an intrinsic part of the right to life and liberty" and "part of the freedoms guaranteed" by the constitution. "This is a blow to the government because it had argued that people don’t have a right to privacy," said Prashant Bhushan, a senior lawyer involved in the case. Constitutional experts believe the judgment has a bearing on broader ci...

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