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Right to privacy and cctv cameras laws related to neighbors in India


04-Jul-2024 (In Civil Law)
I live in a housing society. My neighbor has installed CCTV Camera facing my house which lets him observe the front porch area of my house. He could have installed the cameras in other area for supervision of his own house but he is trying to pry in activities of various people coming to my house. I cant sit freely in my own porch because of it. Please advice. The camera is particularly angled to cover my front yard. can neighbours complain about cctv?
Answers (2)

Answer #1
330 votes

If your neighbour has installed a CCTV camera facing your house, and it infringes on your right to privacy, you can take the following steps:
 

  1. Speak to your neighbour: In the first instance, it is advisable to speak to your neighbour and try to resolve the issue amicably. Explain your concerns and ask them to adjust the camera so that it does not capture your house or the movements of the members of your family or friends.
     

  2. File a complaint with the police: If your neighbour is unwilling to address your concerns, you can file a complaint with the local police station under Section 66E of the Information Technology Act, 2000. Under that Act, the installation of CCTV cameras that invade an individual's privacy is a punishable offence. Section 66E of the Act deals with the violation of privacy and provides for imprisonment upto three years and a fine. The police will investigate the matter and take appropriate action if they find that your neighbour's actions constitute an infringement on your right to privacy under Section 66E.
     

  3. Approach the court: If the police do not take any action or the issue persists, you can approach the court for relief under civil law. Installing a CCTV camera facing your house may be considered a civil wrong or a tort under the law of nuisance. Nuisance is not a criminal offence under the IPC, but it is a civil wrong. Under the law of nuisance, any act or omission that causes unreasonable interference with the use and enjoyment of property is considered a nuisance. If the installation of the CCTV camera by your neighbour is causing a nuisance to you by interfering with your right to privacy, you can file a lawsuit for nuisance seeking an injunction to remove the camera and compensation for damages caused.

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Answer #2
628 votes
Section 268 of the IPC covers such instances under a big umbrella of nuisance. Public nuisance.—A person is guilty of a public nuisance who does any act or is guilty of an illegal omission which causes any common injury, danger or annoyance to the public or to the people in general who dwell or occupy property in the vicinity, or which must necessarily cause injury, obstruction, danger or annoyance to persons who may have occasion to use any public right. A common nuisance is not excused on the ground that it causes some convenience or advantage.
File a complaint with the local police station. Let them take action. Along side, sent a legal notice to your neighbour stating that action will be taken against them if they do not remove the CCTV. If police fails to take action within reasonable time, proceed with a criminal case.
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