The UIDAI has taken two successive governments in India and the entire world for a ride. It identifies nothing. It is not unique. The entire UID data has never been verified and audited. The UID cannot be used for governance, financial databases or anything. It’s use is the biggest threat to national security since independence. – Anupam Saraph 2018

When I opposed Aadhaar in 2010 , I was called a BJP stooge. In 2016 I am still opposing Aadhaar for the same reasons and I am told I am a Congress die hard. No one wants to see why I oppose Aadhaar as it is too difficult. Plus Aadhaar is FREE so why not get one ? Ram Krishnaswamy

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.-Mahatma Gandhi

In matters of conscience, the law of the majority has no place.Mahatma Gandhi

“The invasion of privacy is of no consequence because privacy is not a fundamental right and has no meaning under Article 21. The right to privacy is not a guaranteed under the constitution, because privacy is not a fundamental right.” Article 21 of the Indian constitution refers to the right to life and liberty -Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi

“There is merit in the complaints. You are unwittingly allowing snooping, harassment and commercial exploitation. The information about an individual obtained by the UIDAI while issuing an Aadhaar card shall not be used for any other purpose, save as above, except as may be directed by a court for the purpose of criminal investigation.”-A three judge bench headed by Justice J Chelameswar said in an interim order.

Legal scholarUsha Ramanathandescribes UID as an inverse of sunshine laws like the Right to Information. While the RTI makes the state transparent to the citizen, the UID does the inverse: it makes the citizen transparent to the state, she says.

Good idea gone bad
I have written earlier that UID/Aadhaar was a poorly designed, unreliable and expensive solution to the really good idea of providing national identification for over a billion Indians. My petition contends that UID in its current form violates the right to privacy of a citizen, guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution. This is because sensitive biometric and demographic information of citizens are with enrolment agencies, registrars and sub-registrars who have no legal liability for any misuse of this data. This petition has opened up the larger discussion on privacy rights for Indians. The current Article 21 interpretation by the Supreme Court was done decades ago, before the advent of internet and today’s technology and all the new privacy challenges that have arisen as a consequence.Rajeev Chandrasekhar, MP Rajya Sabha

“What is Aadhaar? There is enormous confusion. That Aadhaar will identify people who are entitled for subsidy. No. Aadhaar doesn’t determine who is eligible and who isn’t,” Jairam Ramesh

But Aadhaar has been mythologised during the previous government by its creators into some technology super force that will transform governance in a miraculous manner. I even read an article recently that compared Aadhaar to some revolution and quoted a 1930s historian, Will Durant.Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Rajya Sabha MP

“I know you will say that it is not mandatory. But, it is compulsorily mandatorily voluntary,” Jairam Ramesh, Rajya Saba April 2017.

August 24, 2017: The nine-judge Constitution Bench rules that right to privacy is “intrinsic to life and liberty”and is inherently protected under the various fundamental freedoms enshrined under Part III of the Indian Constitution

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the World; indeed it's the only thing that ever has"

“Arguing that you don’t care about the right to privacy because you have nothing to hide is no different than saying you don’t care about free speech because you have nothing to say.” -Edward Snowden

In the Supreme Court, Meenakshi Arora, one of the senior counsel in the case, compared it to living under a general, perpetual, nation-wide criminal warrant.

Had never thought of it that way, but living in the Aadhaar universe is like living in a prison. All of us are treated like criminals with barely any rights or recourse and gatekeepers have absolute power on you and your life.

Announcing the launch of the#BreakAadhaarChainscampaign, culminating with events in multiple cities on 12th Jan. This is the last opportunity to make your voice heard before the Supreme Court hearings start on 17th Jan 2018. In collaboration with @no2uidand@rozi_roti.

UIDAI's security seems to be founded on four time tested pillars of security idiocy

1) Denial

2) Issue fiats and point finger

3) Shoot messenger

4) Bury head in sand.

God Save India

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

13775 - ‘Dismantling India’: A grim account of 4 years of Modi government

‘Dismantling India’: A grim account of 4 years of Modi government

(From right to left) Social activist Shabnam Hashmi, former diplomat and senior write Ashok Bajpai, senior leader Mani Shankar Aiyar, economist Arun Kumar, human rights activists John Dayal and Leena Dabiru at the launch of the repor, ‘Dismantling India’

Titled ‘Dismantling India’ and put together by a team of distinguished experts, the study complains about the failing economy, rising unemployment, atrocities against minorities under the BJP govt

A damning report scrutinizing the performance of the Narendra Modi government in its first four years was released on Saturday.
In last four years of Modi government, there have been 214 reported cases of attack on civil society and freedom of expression, 228 cases of attack on education and reported news around and more than 400 cases of Hate and Targeted Violence against Muslims.
Titled Dismantling India and put together by a team of distinguished experts, the study complains about the failing economy, rising unemployment, atrocities against minorities and Dalits, surge in sectarian violence and the state of law and order among other important issues under the Bharatiya Janata Party-led (BJP) government. The document also gives a detailed account of critical happenings that have taken place in the country since 2014.
This report is 355 pages 29 writers have written 25 articles touching different aspect of Indian Society, from culture, economy to gender issues , media, judiciary, foreign policy defence etc.
Speaking at the launch of the report at Delhi's Constitution Club, economist Arun Kumar said that workers in the informal sector had bored the brunt of current government's economic policies. "The farmers are in distress. There are not sufficient jobs being created, affecting employment numbers. Demonetisation and then the poor roll out of the GST did further damage to the economy," said Kumar.

Speaking on the recent spate of mob lynchings across the country, Harsh Mandar rightly noted, “There is an atmosphere of fear being created in the country. Anybody can get killed by a mob. But the majority community is not affected by it. It is just the minorities”
He noted that the Prime Minister hadn't answered a single question in Parliament on demonetisation. "On top of everything, constitutional institutions are facing an existential assault," he said.
"The society has been polarised and India is being converted into a hate republic," said social activist Harsh Mandar, adding that even children were being brainwashed on religious lines.
Speaking on the recent spate of mob lynchings across the country, Mandar rightly noted, "There is an atmosphere of fear being created in the country. Anybody can get killed by a mob. But the majority community is not affected by it. It is just the minorities."
"My identity has been reduced to just being a Muslim woman," decried erstwhile Planning Commission's member Saeeda Hameed. "I have always seen myself as an Indian first," she said. Hameed said that she had been jolted to the core by the spreading of venomous hate and sectarian violence.
She slammed the government on its foreign policy, saying that the government had failed to protect its age-old alliances with neighbours such as Nepal, Maldives and Sri Lanka, who were now drifting in China's camp.
"The Prime Minister is directly responsible for India's disastrous foreign policy," she said.
Jurist Usha Ramanathan mentioned the grave irregularities in implementing Aadhaar to convey how the Centre was hell-bent upon securing business interests. The rights, safety and comforts of the common citizen have completely been set aside.
Kavita Krishnan of Communist Party of India (ML) threw light on the anti-woman, anti-democratic aspect of the Modi government. The way the BJP leaders came out in support of the accused in Kathua rape case clearly reveals the government’s stance. “The BJP government is busy in dividing people and spreading hatred,” said Krishnan.
Shabnam Hashmi, who is one of the people to have brought out this report, said the report exposed the false claims of the Modi government. “The report consists of data indicating that the country has been thrown in the pyre of hatred and destruction,” she said.

13774 - AAdhaar Articles Dated 16th July 2018

Economic Times
NEW DELHI: Those with Aadhaar numbers in India has crossed the landmark 2011 census figure. Nearly 92% of the population and almost every ...

If you have your Aadhaar registered mobile number you can check your Aadhaar update history, said UIDAI (Unique Identification Authority of India) in ...

Economic Times
PANAJI: The biometric data of Aadhaar cannot be hacked even if someone tried a billion times, Union Minister for Information Technology Ravi ...

The Telegraph India
New Delhi: The Union health ministry on Thursday said Aadhaar cards were not required for treatment under the National Health Protection Scheme, ...

The Hindu
People who had turned up at the Collectorate here on Saturday for registration or making changes for Aadhaar cards were told that the centre was ...

Panaji: The biometric data of Aadhaar cannot be hacked even if someone tried a billion times, Union Minister for Information Technology Ravi Shankar ...

Times of India
Thanks to her Aadhaar card and persistent efforts of district legal services authority, she found her family. Lakshmi Bhai, who hails from Jalgaon district ...

Financial Express
Amid a flurry of reports stating that Aadhaar-based payments have improved efficiency of Direct Benefit Transfers (DBTs), economist and rural jobs ...

The Asian Age
This in spite of cooperation minister Subhash Deshmukh assuring the Legislative Assembly that the government would take steps to make Aadhaar ...

Nearly 30,000 Pakistani nationals, mostly Hindus, have been granted Long Time Visas (LTVs) since 2011, making them eligible to obtain PAN and ...

5 Dariya News
The Deputy Commissioner directed all the sectoral/Block level officers for registration of CPIS and preparing the list of all employees who are Aadhaar ...

The Asian Age
Mr Shirsat, whose right hand was maimed, failed to obtain an Aadhaar card, as the fingerprints of his left hand were not recorded properly. Sena MLAs ...

Times of India
"Aadhaar is the new technology which takes all your information. Human identity has now become a number. Earlier it was the name and address of a ...

The Indian Express
However, Aadhaar card/E-Aadhaar, EPIC, PAN card, driving license and Pay Pension Order will be accepted as proof of Date of Birth only if it has the ...

India's digital leap – consisting of a combination of Jan Dhan, Aadhaar, rising mobile penetration and a Goods and Services Tax regime – is ...

The Wire
The MoRD statement says: “Contrary to the belief in the article regarding APBS [Aadhaar Payments Bridge System], it is worth mentioning that Aadhar ...

Zee News
Monika claimed to have the Aadhaar card of the woman which reads she is the wife of Dr Gagan Bhagat. "We are not divorced and I have filed a ...

Financial Express
Although the Income Tax Department has again extended the deadline to link one's Aadhaar number with the PAN card, there are some tasks which ...

Programmes like Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, Jan Dhan Yojana, Aadhaar and Ujjwala Yojana have managed to change the lives of millions across India ...

The Telegraph India
The photocopy of an Aadhaar card of found from the crime spot led to the arrest of the three members. Those absconding will be nabbed soon," said ...

The Tribune
Those who do not possess Aadhaar cards are required to have a Unique National Academic Depository ID. Details can be accessed through the ...

The Hindu
... nine-acre fertile land parcel in Medipally village in Yacharam mandal by blurring the image of the real owner on the Aadhaar card and sold the land ...

The Hindu
Eligible youth with supporting income and educational qualification proofs along with Aadhaar enrolment card must reach the Mekala Abhinav ...

Daily News & Analysis
... Deshmukh on Friday informed the State Assembly that there are 2.40 lakh farmers who can't avail loan waiver for the want of Aadhaar card.

Times of India
Up to Rs 250 is being charged for processing Aadhaar cards when government rules state that CSCs cannot charge more than Rs 25 for any service.

13773 - Aadhaar Articles Dated 15th July 2018

Times of India
NEW DELHI: Clearing the air around requirement of Aadhaar to avail benefits under Ayushman Bharat National Health Protection Scheme (NHPS), ...

Aadhaar preferable, not 'must', for Ayushman Bharat: Health Ministry - Hindu Business Line (satire) (press release) (blog)

Times of India
Around 500 hospitals and healthcare centres in Maharashtra will have trained staffers for initiating Aadhaar-linked birth registration from August.

The Hindu
The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) has allowed Aadhaar authentication ecosystem partners such as banks and telecom firms to ...

Times of India
Speaking on the issues of Aadhaar, cyber security and data privacy at the Digital Identity Research Initiative conference at Indian School of Business ...

Bangalore Mirror
She was booked under the Passport Act. She approached a trial court for bail and her counsel submitted Aadhaar and PAN cards to prove her ...

The Hindu
A special Aadhaar drive will be conducted by Madurai division of the Department of Posts at all its 48 post offices on July 14. Aadhaar services and ...

The Tribune
The Aadhaar linkage will curb alleged misuse of public funds in name of bogus members by them, including conversion of black money received by ...

'EC should direct parties to give Aadhaar numbers of members' - Hindu Business Line (satire) (press release) (blog)

Trak.in (blog)
As per some interesting reports coming in, Aadhaar has enabled massive savings of Rs 90,000 crore, ever since it came into the picture.

The Hindu
In order to authenticate the identity of Ayushman Bharat beneficiaries, the use of Aadhaar card is preferable but is not a “must”, the Union Health ...

Daily News & Analysis
The state public health department will establish enrolment centres in around 500 of its hospitals for Aadhaar-linked birth registration to assign ...

Aadhaar Card information is termed to be one of the most personal pieces of information and is not meant to be leaked around. In the latest ...

Economic Times
RBI thereafter had directed Airtel Payments Bank not to on-board new customers while Aadhaar-issuing body UIDAI had suspended the e-KYC ...

RBI lifts ban on Airtel Payments Bank to enrol new customers - Hindu Business Line (satire) (press release) (blog)

Global Voices Online
This triggered consternation among civil society and privacy advocates, as it indicates that the data protection act will have no bearing on the Aadhaar ...

Three persons starved to death due to the Aadhaar-based biometric authentication (ABBA) failure for their household members who could go to the ...

The Indian Express
Rejected payments were not unknown earlier but they have become endemic ever since the linking of NREGA wage payments with Aadhaar. Linking ...

The Tribune
The General Post Office, Amritsar, was given Aadhaar excellence award for the best performing post office in the Punjab west postal region at a ...

The Wire
The Campaign has urged the state to initiate criminal proceedings in all cases of violence and demanded delinking of Aadhaar from all public services ...

Times of India
HYDERABAD: In the second session on Aadhaar and privacy, experts expressed apprehensions about Aadhaar being used as mass surveillance ...

Financial Express
Aadhaar: Just like your PAN card, you also need your Aadhaar number for easy ITR filing and e-verification using Aadhaar-based OTP.

Times of India
Many of the identity proofs such as Aadhaar card of these minor girls are raising suspicion because of their non-conformity with their parents details.

Monday, July 16, 2018

13772 - In India, regulators are deciding the fate of sensitive data behind closed doors - Global Voices

Posted 13 July 2018 12:45 GMT

A biometric data collection center in India. Photo by Bishwarup Ganguly via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY 3.0)

On August 2017, a nine-judge bench of the Supreme Court of India unanimously upheld the privacy of Indian citizens as a fundamental right.
Since that time, a series of campaigns, petitions and legal battles citing this ruling have ensued, many of them arguing against India’s biometric identification programme, known as Aadhaar. They charge that Aadhaar runs afoul of the court verdict.
These critiques have made it clear that India needs a stronger definition of “data”, personal, sensitive and otherwise. This has been known for some time, and there have been numerous privacy bills and legislative efforts to address personal data privacy in India, from the IT Act of 2000 (which guarded individuals from privacy breach from the corporate sector), to a 2011 Personal Data Bill (which was proposed but never passed), to a 2012 committee report proposing criteria for a privacy protection law.
Despite all these efforts, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology formed a new committee in August 2017, that also intended to draft a data protection law.
Headed by former Supreme Court judge Justice B.N. Srikrishna (and thus titled Srikrishna Committee), the committee's job is to “ensure the growth of the digital economy while keeping personal data of citizens secure and protected.”

Committee efforts have not been transparent
Although it has existed for nearly a year's time, the Committee has yet to release meeting minutes or a draft of the bill that they are developing.
On June 23, 2018, online media outlet The Print reported on a leaked copy that the outlet had obtained, along with a report from the committee stating that the bill will “not apply to any processing activity that has been completed prior to this law coming into effect.” This triggered consternation among civil society and privacy advocates, as it indicates that the data protection act will have no bearing on the Aadhaar system.
The only official document released by the committee has been a November 2017 white paper on data protection which left many citizens with more questions than answers. It reflected uncertainty regarding the level of control over how much data can be stored and limited to the country itself, and failed to describe what rights individuals hold over their own data.

Critics lament pro-Aadhaar bias and lack of civil society representation
Along with the Srikrishna Committee’s output, leading scholars and lawyers have criticized the committee for demonstrating a lack of transparency, over-representing the interests of people who are in favor of — or stand to gain from — Aadhaar, and lacking representation from civil society.

A group of lawyers in India wrote a letter to the Committee, putting forth their concerns regarding the bill and emphasizing the need to review the Aadhaar data processing scheme in its entirety. The letter explicitly states that Aadhaar stands in conflict with data privacy and argues that the data protection law that could be citizen-centric.

Noted researcher and expert on law and poverty Dr. Usha Ramanathan spoke about this at a consultation held by the Committee in Bengaluru, as tweeted by civil engineer and internet researcher Srinivas Kodali:

Usha Ramanathan asking for the expansion of data protection committee and how there is no civil society representation plus individuals in committee having a conflict of interest by supporting #Aadhaar

Usha Ramanathan asking for the expansion of data protection committee and how there is no civil society representation plus individuals in committee having conflict of interest by supporting #Aadhaar

Letter to Justice Srikrishna regarding the lack of transparency in functioning of the committee of experts examining the data protection framework. Minutes of meeting illegally denied under RTI stating“This information currently is not in public domain”.
Others have charged that consultations have been too short or lacking sufficient structure to accomplish the task at hand.
The composition of the committee has also been at issue. Vidhi Centre of Legal Policy, a team of lawyers, headed by Arghya Sengupta is currently working on the Data protection Bill, even when they contributed in the drafting of Aadhaar Act and later defended it in court as well.
Here is Bangalore-based lawyer Malavika Prasad's thread on the role of Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy:

Some thoughts on @Vidhi_India handling Government's legal/policy work for pay & the response pictured below:
1. The government, no doubt, has freedom to contract. A contract with Vidhi is a government contract for services. However, government never has unfettered discretion. 1/5
Researcher Malavika Raghavan published a thread on Data Protection:

Tweetstorm coming up on the 9 distinguishing points of our thinking on #DataProtection  @dvararesearch @benichugh @julupani @binduananth 1/n

The committee is expected to release a draft of the bill in late July 2018, just as the Aadhaar verdict is also awaited.
As the Supreme Court edges closer to a final judgment on the constitutional validity of its biometric scheme, all eyes will be on the terms set by the Sri Krishna Committee which will define the contours of data protection and privacy in India for the foreseeable future.

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