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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Sunday, February 14, 2016

9358 - Bid to make Aadhaar card must for government benefits - TNN

Mahendra Singh | TNN | Feb 13, 2016, 06.19 AM IST

NEW DELHI: In a move to give the Aadhar identity a statutory footing and link it to disbursal of central subsidies and assistance, the NDA government is ready with a new bill intended to accelerate its financial inclusion schemes.

With PM Narendra Modi seeing Aadhar as integral to the JAM (Jan Dhan, Aadhaar, mobile governance) trinity being envisaged to plug leakages and speed up delivery of central welfare schemes costing Rs 3.5 lakh crore, the legislation is intended to overcome legal infirmities in the unique identity programme. Some 97 crore residents have till date been enrolled under the project, which is under the Supreme Court's scrutiny. A new bill seeks to ensure stronger legal protection of Aadhaar's biometric data by incorporating privacy provisions and restricting its sharing and use. The bill will ensure that no mega databank on individuals linking various services they access is created.

The UPA-II government introduced the National Identification Authority of India (NIDAI) Bill 2010 in the Rajya Sabha to provide statutory backing to its Aadhaar scheme, but it could not get the approval of Parliament. The BJP-led government is planning to push the bill, pending in Rajya Sabha, in the coming budget session of Parliament with amendments to address legal issues and data security as raised in a PIL in Supreme Court. 

Though the government is yet to finalise its stand whether to get the same bill passed or to move new amendments, there is strong indication that the Centre may push the legislation as a money bill in the coming session to ensure that a logjam in Parliament does not block its JAM initative. A money bill can't be blocked in Rajya Sabha where the ruling dispensation lacks numbers.

The Aadhaar (Delivery of Benefits, Subsidies and Services) Bill 2016, which is likely to replace pending NIDAI Bill, could help the government counter concerns raised about issue of privacy and data security. The fresh legislation provides for proof of Aadhaar number as a condition for receipt of benefit and subsidy funded by the Consolidated Fund of India. The attorney general has given his opinion that the new bill can be introduced as a money bill as per the Constitution.