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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Saturday, April 2, 2016

9719 - Taxman seeks more details of those earning over Rs50 lakh - Live Mint

Last Modified: Fri, Apr 01 2016. 03 25 AM IST

Taxman seeks more details of those earning over Rs50 lakh

Income tax dept notifies new tax return forms for 2016-17, wants wealthy individuals to mandatorily disclose details about assets like land, property and jewellery

Remya Nair


The government has asked wealthy individuals to mandatorily disclose details about assets such as land, property and jewellery in their tax returns to gather more information and prevent accumulation of illegal wealth.

The income-tax department has asked taxpayers with an annual income of more than Rs.50 lakh to declare immovable assets such as land and building and movable assets such as cash in hand, jewellery, vehicles, yachts, boats and aircraft. The tax department notified the new tax return forms for assessment year 2016-17 on Thursday.

“The department is trying to get as much information as possible from these tax return forms,” said N.R. Bhanumurthy, a professor at the National Institute of Public Finance and Policy, New Delhi. “The whole purpose is to minimize tax evasion.”

Since coming to power in 2014, the National Democratic Alliance government has introduced several steps to check domestic black money as well as unaccounted wealth stashed overseas. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had, in fact, promised to recover thousands of crore of rupees in black money in the 2014 Lok Sabha election campaign.

To prevent tax evasion, the tax department last year sought information on foreign travel undertaken by taxpayers and the expenditure incurred, as well as details of all bank accounts along with account balances at the end of a year in the tax return forms. However, the tax department issued revised forms seeking only the passport numbers without details of travel and expenditure and bank account information without the need to disclose the balance, after protests by taxpayers over the tedious tax return forms. The forms also sought the taxpayer’s Aadhaar number, if available.

For assessment year 2016-17, the tax department has now included a schedule on asset and liabilities which will have to be filled by individuals and HUFs, or Hindu Undivided Families, where total income exceeds Rs.50 lakh. It has also asked individuals and HUFs to provide details of pass-through income from business trust or investment fund in ITR form 2 and ITR form 2A.

“Last year, the income-tax department asked for bank account information and this year they have gone a step further and asked for net worth of taxpayers,” said Archit Gupta, founder and chief executive officer of ClearTax, an electronic tax return filing service provider.

“A large number of taxpayers will need help to file their tax returns and find out the value of assets to be included in the form,” he said.

The Modi government has already enacted the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act, 2015, requiring compulsory disclosure of foreign assets and income and subjecting evaders to stiff penalties and jail terms. It has also introduced legislation aimed at amending the Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Act. It will help check creation of black money in India, especially in real estate transactions. In addition, the tax department is also seeding the permanent account number with Aadhaar—a unique identity number that is already linked to many bank accounts—to bring tax evaders to book.