uid

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 scholar Usha Ramanathan describes 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


Special

Here is what the Parliament Standing Committee on Finance, which examined the draft N I A Bill said.

1. There is no feasibility study of the project]

2. The project was approved in haste

3. The system has far-reaching consequences for national security

4. The project is directionless with no clarity of purpose

5. It is built on unreliable and untested technology

6. The exercise becomes futile in case the project does not continue beyond the present number of 200 million enrolments

7. There is lack of coordination and difference of views between various departments and ministries of government on the project

Quotes

What was said before the elections:

NPR & UID aiding Aliens – Narendra Modi

"I don't agree to Nandan Nilekeni and his madcap (UID) scheme which he is trying to promote," Senior BJP Leader Yashwant Sinha, Sept 2012

"All we have to show for the hundreds of thousands of crore spent on Aadhar is a Congress ticket for Nilekani" Yashwant Sinha.(27/02/2014)

TV Mohandas Pai, former chief financial officer and head of human resources, tweeted: "selling his soul for power; made his money in the company wedded to meritocracy." Money Life Article

Nilekani’s reporting structure is unprecedented in history; he reports directly to the Prime Minister, thus bypassing all checks and balances in government - Home Minister Chidambaram

To refer to Aadhaar as an anti corruption tool despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary is mystifying. That it is now officially a Rs.50,000 Crores solution searching for an explanation is also without any doubt. -- Statement by Rajeev Chandrasekhar, MP & Member, Standing Committee on Finance

Finance minister P Chidambaram’s statement, in an exit interview to this newspaper, that Aadhaar needs to be re-thought completely is probably the last nail in its coffin. :-) Financial Express

The Rural Development Ministry headed by Jairam Ramesh created a road Block and refused to make Aadhaar mandatory for making wage payment to people enrolled under the world’s largest social security scheme NRGA unless all residents are covered.


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Monday, October 5, 2015

8816 - AADHAAR-LINKED SOCIAL BENEFITS SWELL COFFERS = Daily Pioneer

Sunday, 04 October 2015 | Abraham Thomas | New Delhi

Linking Aadhaar to social benefit schemes has swelled the Government coffers by Rs2,687 crore — enabled through elimination of duplicate and ghost beneficiaries. This claim made by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) in an affidavit before the Supreme Court will prove crucial considering the fact that the apex court is to decide Centre’s plea on Tuesday whether or not to permit linking of Aadhaar to a host of social benefit schemes purely on a voluntary basis.

At present, there are 91.68 crore Aadhaar card holders in the country, which is by far the widest possible database available for the over 127 crore population. Using Aadhaar, the Government has so far linked 3.16 crore out of 9.16 crore active workers under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGA), over 7.01 crore individuals out of 17.29 crore under PM Jan Dhan Yojana, 87 lakh people under Employees Provident Fund scheme, 3.2 lakh retired people for Jeevan Pramaan Certificate, about 54 lakh pensioners (including old aged, widows, and disabled), besides LPG and PDS beneficiaries.

When the MGNREGA database was streamlined using Aadhaar documentation, the States of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana alone provided a long list of ghost beneficiaries that saved Rs127 crore worth public mone.This exercise was repeated with other Central-sponsored schemes as well and the results were note-worthy.

Under the Public Distribution Scheme (PDS), when Aadhaar number was inserted into the list of beneficiaries in Andhra Pradesh alone 69 lakh duplicates were detected. In Delhi, 80,000 ration cards were found duplicate. In all, on the information received from States, the Government saved benefits up to Rs 2,345.78 crore. Even in pension accounts, State of Jharkhand reported 59 per cent beneficiaries to be fake or duplicate while in Chandigarh almost 99 per cent were reported as duplicate accounts. In State-sponsored scholarship schemes too, out of 5.34 lakh beneficiaries in Telangana 36,960 were found to illegally avail the scheme followed by Andhra Pradesh and Punjab. In all, the Government claimed to have saved an estimated sum of Rs 2,687.07 crore.

The UIDAI wants the court to consider these facts on Tuesday as it seeks modification of an earlier order passed on August 11, 2015 restricting use of Aadhaar to LPG and PDS distribution schemes alone. The above two concessions were granted by the court even as the Bench referred the larger question of whether citizens can be forced to part their private details under Aadhaar scheme to the Government raising privacy issues. This question is pending consideration before a Constitution Bench but the application of the Centre will be heard on Tuesday by a three-judge Bench that referred the case to the larger Bench.

With coming of Aadhaar, delivery of goods under LPG and PDS schemes has proved effective, efficient and error-free, claims the Government. It wants to replicate this experience using Aadhaar for other schemes as well.