Shantanu Guha Ray v. Union of India

The Cyber Blog IndiaCase Summary

Writ petition seeking directions for CBI to register FIRs and investigate the matter of hacking of NSE's servers

Shantanu Guha Ray v. Union of India
In the High Court of Delhi
W.P. (Crl.) 2114/2020 & Crl. M.A. 5389, 12853/2022
Before Chief Justice Satish Chandra and Justice Subramonium Prasad
Decided on May 23. 2023

Relevancy of the case: Writ petition seeking directions for CBI to register FIRs and investigate the matter of hacking of NSE’s servers

Statutes and Provisions Involved

  • The Information Technology Act, 2000 (Section 69B, 72A)
  • The Indian Penal Code, 1860 (Section 120B, 201, 409)
  • The Indian Telegraph Act, 1885 (Section 24, 25)
  • The Indian Wireless Telegraph Act, 1933 (Section 3, 6)
  • The Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 (Section 13)

Relevant Facts of the Case

  • The petitioner is a journalist. He filed a detailed complaint against certain brokers of the National Stock Exchange, who had illegally made money by exploiting NSE servers, with the Central Bureau Investigation in 2017. The CBI took no action in the matter.
  • Therefore, the petitioner filed the present PIL, praying for the CBI to register FIRs and submit a status report of the investigation.

Prominent Submissions by the Advocates

  • The Central Bureau of Investigation’s counsel filed a status report on September 2, 2022, which found that:
    • The accused brokers had gained unfair advantages in trading by exploiting the NSE servers. They logged into the secondary server without the NSE’s permission since they shared their location with the NSE’s facility. They illegally got data before the other trading members, thus making illegal profits.
    • The accused brokers were involved in criminal conspiracy with the Joint Managing Director and the Managing Director of the NSE.
    • The agency searched the office premises, and the brokers’ digital data was collected and analysed. Moreover, it had also filed FIRs against the accused.
  • The respondents filed another status report on March 23, 2022, to update the progress of the investigation and inform the court that the trial had begun.

Opinion of the Bench

  • The court was satisfied with the respondent’s investigation into the matter. They had also filed the chargesheets. Thus, there was no further reason to monitor the trial.

Final Decision

  • The court dismissed the writ petition.

Arnav Kaman, an undergraduate student at Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law, Punjab, prepared this case summary during his internship with The Cyber Blog India in January/February 2024.