The Telangana High Court on Monday issued notice to the State of Telangana on a plea challenging use of Facial Recognition Technology (FRT) by the State and Telangana Police without a valid law [SQ Masood v State of Telangana]..FRT is a technology which involves processing digital images of individuals faces for their verification and identification.A Bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Abhinand Kumar Shavili sought the response of the State and the Police on a petition filed by a social activist, SQ Masood and listed the matter for further hearing on January 15. Masood in his plea raised apprehensions that he was subject to FRT. .This apprehension arose when in May 2019, the petitioner was stopped by the Telangana police while travelling for legitimate purposes and despite no accusation of committing any infraction, his photograph was taken by police officers without his consent..The plea said that as per news reports, the respondents were taking active steps towards the implementation of FRT in the State. It was also clarified that the plea relied on news reports because the respondents had failed to provide information regarding the use and implementation of FRT in public domain and also declined to provide such details in response to Right to Information (RTI) applications..The petitioner argued that the Telangana Police’s unfettered use of FRT was violative of the fundamental right to privacy since it was not backed by a law. The petitioner relied on the judgment of the Supreme Court in KS Puttuswamy v Union of India to back this argument.“Restrictions on fundamental rights must be grounded in specific legal provisions that set out the circumstances under which the right can be infringed, and the procedural and substantive safeguards against unconstitutional violations,” the petition said..Further, it was submitted that the State is obligated to demonstrate that the FRT is targeted, specific and narrow. There is also a requirement to demonstrate that a probable and reasonable cause exists for deploying the technology.However, no such requirements have been shown and the FRT appears to be for the purpose of mass surveillance, it was contended..Finally, the petitioner argued that the use of FRT was violative of the Right to Equality guaranteed under Article 14 of the Constitution due to its arbitrary nature. “FRT is not 100% accurate anywhere in the world, and this lack of accuracy is also associated with bias against marginalised communities.. The inherent bias in the technology violates Article 14,” the petitioner further submitted..Therefore, apart from a direction to prohibit the use of FRT for any purpose, the petitioner also sought an interim order to suspend the use of the technology pending the disposal of the petition..Advocate Manoj Reddy represented the Petitioner.