Giving voice sample to police does not violate privacy, rules top court

  1. The Supreme Court has ruled that a judicial magistrate can order an accused to give his voice samples even against his consent in the course of a criminal investigation.
  2. The judgment came on an appeal filed by petitioner against a 2010 order of a magistrate court in Uttar Pradesh allowing police to get his voice sample.
  3. Article 20(3) of the Constitution mandated that no person accused of any offence shall be compelled to be a witness against himself.
  4. However,the court said that giving voice sample by itself did not incriminate a person.Hence,judicial order to give such a sample does not infringe the fundamental rights to privacy or against self-incrimination.
  5. The 87th Report of the Law Commission of India in 1980 describes a voice print as a visual recording of voice.Voiceprints resemble fingerprints as each person has a distinctive voice with characteristic features dictated by vocal cavities and articulates.
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