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, March 21, 2016

9596 - Aadhaar bill strongest ever, but need ‘larger privacy bill’: Nilekani - Hindustan Times


  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New DelhiUpdated: Mar 18, 2016 10:35 IST
Nandan Nilekani emphasized the need for a “larger privacy bill” to address other concerns such as telephone tapping. (File Photo)

Nandan Nilekani, former chairman of the unique identification authority of India (UIDAI), finds the new Aadhaar bill “the strongest that has ever come” in terms of privacy safeguards, but emphasized the need for a “larger privacy bill” to address other concerns such as telephone tapping.
During the debate on the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Bill in Parliament this week, many lawmakers expressed apprehension about the possibility of misuse of biometric and other data collected under the Aadhaar scheme to give a unique identification number to all Indians.
Parliament cleared the bill on Wednesday but not before the Congress introduced amendments in the Rajya Sabha, forcing the government to take it back to the Lok Sabha. The lower house, where the NDA enjoys a clear majority, rejected the amendments, paving the way for the bill to become a law after it receives the President’s assent.
In a telephonic interview with HT on Thursday, Nilekani credited the previous UPA government for “initiating the vision” and the NDA government for “seeing the wisdom” of the project and taking it through to its “logical culmination” and putting in place a robust legal framework that will enable Aadhaar to be used in every kind of subsidy and beyond.
“We do need a larger privacy bill, not just for Aadhaar but also for many other things like privacy in telephone tapping and in other online systems,” said the Infosys cofounder. “Huge multinationals are taking data about millions of Indians abroad and nobody seems to be bothered. There are a lot of issues about privacy. That’s quite an omnibus approach.”

Nilekani, who was chosen by the UPA government to head the UIDAI and given Cabinet minister’s rank, praised the previous government for giving him “complete professional autonomy and support at critical times”.
On the Opposition’s criticism of the Aadhaar bill over privacy concerns, he said, “There is no solution that satisfies everybody…For people who are balanced in the middle and want to solve India’s problems, this is as good as one can get”.
The country is “on the verge of a revolution” as a billion people will have Aadhaar numbers. There are a few billion-plus online user systems and they are all controlled by foreign companies — Google has seven platforms with a billion users and Facebook has three. Even the Chinese have one or two such platforms, but they are in the private sector.
“This (Aadhaar) is the only case of a platform with a billion users in the government sector for public good. It has huge transformational potential,” said Nilekani, an entrepreneur who unsuccessfully contested the last Lok Sabha election from Bangalore South as a Congress candidate.
“I did...foray into politics but now I am out of it. I realise that my strength is not in politics. My strength is in problem-solving using technology and that’s where I am going to concentrate my efforts,” he said.