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, March 27, 2016

9651 - Rajeev Satav—the Congress crusader - Live Mint

Last Modified: Wed, Mar 23 2016. 05 17 PM IST


His party’s Lok Sabha numbers may be dismal, but his voice is among the strongest

Anuja

Wth the Congress reduced to a historic low of just 45 members in the Lok Sabha, voices of the younger generation, including like that of Rajeev Satav, have gained prominence not just within the party but also from other rival political groups. Photo: Priyanka Parashar/Mint

New Delhi: As someone who stood against the Narendra Modi wave of 2014 and won one of the only two seats that his party secured in home state in the general election, Congressman Rajeev Shankarrao Satav is clearly no pushover.

So it was no surprise that one of the loudest, clearest voices in the Parliament debate on Aadhaar was that of 41-year-old Satav, a first-time MP from Hingoli in Maharashtra, 600km away from Mumbai. With the Congress party reduced to a historic low of just 45 members in the Lok Sabha, voices of the younger generation, including like that of Satav, have gained prominence not just within the party but also from other rival political parties.

The echo of Satav’s speech on Aadhaar was also heard in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) camp. While delivering the Motion of Thanks, Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave a backhanded compliment to Congress party that it was for the first time in the first half of budget session that he had heard new speakers from Congress party who were given chance to speak because, he said, most of the time learned members were not given a chance to speak in order to make a chosen member look intelligent.

Satav, who opened the Congress attack in the Lok Sabha during the discussion on Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Bill, 2016, made repeated references to comments made by BJP leaders on Aadhaar when they were in opposition and defended his arguments with facts and figures.

“They have brought this bill to avoid Rajya Sabha,” Satav told Mint. “Everybody in the House other than the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) was of the opinion that the Bill should be sent to the standing committee. The parties supporting the government also felt it needs more time. That day, the consensus of the House was that it should be sent to the standing committee but that did not happen,” he said.
The government introduced the Aadhaar bill as a money bill so that Rajya Sabha, where the opposition holds majority, cannot veto it. The NDA-dominated Lok Sabha rejected the recommendations made by the Rajya Sabha and passed the bill in its original form, giving statutory backing for unique identification number project intended to transfer subsidies and state assistance.

Satav’s demand that the bill be referred to a standing committee was not accepted, but analysts said he did succeed in sending across the message that the young turks of the Congress party have arrived in the Parliament.

Even before the Aadhaar debate, Satav has led Congress in a number of debates in the Lok Sabha and has been active in raising issues.

“Satav’s performance in the Parliament shows that the younger generation in Congress has arrived, at least in the Parliament. The quality of the party and its future truly depends on how much the party actually uses such young leaders,” N. Bhaskara Rao, a New Delhi-based political analyst said.

“He has a good and clean image. There is a lot of clarity in his speeches and he can speak well specially because the command over both Hindi and English comes naturally. For a first-timer in the Parliament, Satav’s understanding of subjects is commendable,” Rao added.

Born and brought up in Kalamnuri city of Hingoli district, Satav graduated in science from Pune’s Ferguson College and later secured a post-graduate law degree from ILS Law College.
Satav, who has never practiced law, says he does farming. “I am an actual farmer, not the ones who just put it under occupation in their bio data. My wife (Pradnya Satav) is a qualified doctor but she also does farming,” he said. Satav has two school-going children.

Bespectacled and soft spoken, Satav first came in the limelight in 2010 when Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi chose him as the national president of Indian Youth Congress (IYC), the youth wing of Congress party. Satav, who has been credited with a turnaround of the youth wing, took over the frontal organization at a time when Gandhi was trying to implement the idea of internal elections.

“He is a good leader and is very presentable. He has a habit of reading a lot; so, almost all the arguments he makes in the Parliament, he reads up on it well and prepares thoroughly,” a senior Congress leader associated with the IYC in the past said, requesting anonymity.

The leader added that the young brigade of the Congress party is finally getting prominence in the Lok Sabha because the party is greatly reduced in numbers and has ‘very little option’ other than projecting its new and young leaders. Some of the other young leaders active in the Lok Sabha include Gaurav Gogoi (33), Mausam Noor (36), Deepender Singh Hooda (40) and Sushmita Dev (43).

Jai Mrug, a Mumbai-based political analyst, says that this is the ‘coming of age’ of young leadership in the Congress.
“It is heartening to see the way young leaders have emerged. Particularly for the Congress party, this is a coming of age for the younger generation. In Satav’s case, it is noteworthy that he got personally groomed by Rahul Gandhi,” Mrug said.
Belonging to a party whose leaders have often been criticized for ‘losing the ground connect’, Satav started his political career when he first got elected as a member of Kalanmuri block panchayat in 2002, zila panchayat member of Hingoli in 2007, president of the IYC’s Maharashtra unit in 2008 and an MLA in 2009. His mother, Rajnitai Satav, has also been an MLA from Congress but he claims that his career had no influence from his mother.

“The experience of working in local bodies is always helpful. Especially when you get to learn how local administration works, that is very important,” he said. He makes sure he spends time in his constituency. Even during Parliament sessions, he spends his weekends at Hingoli.

Ask him how difficult it has been being a first-time MP with his party reduced to just 45 members and he says candidly: “The first two sessions were difficult. All parties other than our UPA allies would stand up on their seats and blame the Congress for everything. So, the first two sessions were quite difficult. We have less numbers but that is fine. In the first two sessions, there were also questions whether the Congress will be principal opposition or not, but in the last 21 months, it is completely clear, especially the way in which we have raised issues and cornered the government... The government’s arrogance made us change our strategy,” he said.

According to PRS Legislative Research, Satav has an attendance record of 83%, same as the national average. He has participated in 77 debates and 457 questions in the lower house. He has till now introduced seven private members’ bills, including the Right to Access of Judicial Proceedings and Information Bill on Friday.

Satav feels the defeat of the Congress party in the general elections has “helped” the party to introspect and correct. He feels the changes in state units where party has elected young state presidents including Sachin Pilot in Rajasthan, Arun Yadav in Madhya Pradesh and Ashok Tanwar in Haryana shows that the younger generation is being given an opportunity, even as the right mix is reached with veterans guiding the party.
“Now is the fighting time for the Congress. It is very clear that those who are really fighting on the street, those who are really working on the ground, they will represent the Congress. It is not like you are in power and even if you are not doing anything, you are representing the party. It is very clear that those working on the ground will have the actual role in the party,” he said.


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First Published: Wed, Mar 23 2016. 11 50 AM IS