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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Wednesday, April 6, 2016

9754 - Political updates: Govt to probe Indian names in Panama Papers - Live Mint

Last Modified: Tue, Apr 05 2016. 10 17 AM IST


The govt has set up a team to investigate suspected tax evasion by Indian individuals named in Panama Papers as maintaining offshore accounts

Pretika Khanna


New Delhi: The assembly elections in the states of Assam and West Bengal kicked off on Monday with the two states registering high voter turnout. Meanwhile, Mehbooba Mufti took charge as the first female chief minister of Jammu & Kashmir. This comes after the state saw months of uncertainty over government formation. Today, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch the ‘Stand up India’ initiative, to give a push to entrepreneurship and to provide loans to scheduled castes/scheduled tribes (SCs/STs) and women entrepreneurs.

Assembly elections: First phase polls see high voter turnout
Elections to the West Bengal and Assam legislative assemblies held on Monday witnessed high voter turnout of 82.63% and 78.06%, respectively. In Bengal, high turnout and peaceful polling was reported from the 18 assembly constituencies, of which 13 were identified as left wing extremism-affected region. The first phase of polling in Bengal is spread over two days. In Assam, where 65 out of the total 126 assembly constituencies went to polls on Monday, Behali constituency in Biswanath Chariali district clocked the highest turnout of 85%. The next phase of polling in the two states is on 11 April. Read more

Mehbooba Mufti takes oath as first woman chief minister in J&K
Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chief Mehbooba Mufti made history on Monday by becoming the first woman chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir. Mehbooba Mufti took oath in Jammu along with 17 cabinet ministers and six ministers of state (MoS). Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) Nirmal Singh also took oath as deputy chief minister, as per the alliance agreement between the two parties. Interestingly, this is the first time Mehbooba Mufti is holding an administrative post in the state or at the national level, as so far she had limited herself to party work.

PM to launch Stand Up India today
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch the Stand Up India initiative on Tuesday. The initiative will promote entrepreneurship among the scheduled castes, scheduled tribes and women by facilitating loans in the range of Rs.10 lakh to Rs.100 lakh. Each branch of a scheduled commercial bank shall facilitate at least two such loans. A web portal will also be launched for the initiative, to enable online registration and support services.

Panama Papers: Team set up to probe Indians named in reports
The government has set up a team to investigate suspected tax evasion by Indian individuals named in the so-called Panama Papers as maintaining offshore accounts. Names of more than 500 Indians appear in a list of individuals who paid Panama law firm Mossack Fonseca to set up offshore entities in tax havens around the world, according to an Indian Express report on Monday. Read more

More than one billion people have Aadhaar cards now
Armed with legislative backing and widespread coverage of Aadhaar, the government will soon approach the Supreme Court with a request to allow the usage of the unique identity number for more government services and social security programmes. Aadhaar crossed the one billion coverage mark on Monday.

Tamil Nadu polls: DMK-Congress seat-sharing pact; AIADMK announces list
The Congress and the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) finally struck a seat-sharing deal for the upcoming Tamil Nadu assembly elections on Monday. The Congress party has been assigned 41 seats and the remaining will be distributed with DMK contesting a larger portion of the seats. The Tamil Nadu state assembly has 234 seats. Read more
The ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) headed by J. Jayalalithaa on Monday announced its candidates for the upcoming assembly elections. The party will contest 227 of the 234 seats. Read more

It’s Arun Jaitley vs Arvind Kejriwal again
Hitting out at Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal who criticised the Union government’s move to levy excise duty on jewellery, finance minister Arun Jaitley on Monday said that keeping out luxury goods from the goods and services tax (GST) would push up the rate under the new indirect tax regime beyond 18%. Referring to Kejriwal’s comment against the levy of excise duty on jewellery, Jaitley said that Delhi itself levies value added tax (VAT) on jewellery. Read more

Panchayat polls: Small elections, big money
Panchayat elections held at the village level are an exercise of the ballot at the most basic grassroots level. Yet an examination of gram panchayat polls across two districts in Uttar Pradesh’s distressed Bundelkhand region points to the increasing use of money power. A lack of checks on election expenditure means it is easy for candidates to bribe voters.

BJP luring Congress MLAs with money power: Harish Rawat
Former Uttarakhand chief minister Harish Rawat on Monday accused the BJP’s central leadership of luring Congress MLAs with its money power and asked people interested in the welfare of the state to come forward to “save democracy”. Read more

JD(U) to get a new president on 10 April
Having notched up a win in the Bihar assembly elections last year, the Janata Dal (United) or JD(U) is set to elect a new party president in its national council meeting on 10 April. Current party president Sharad Yadav has decided not to seek a fourth term.

The changing pattern of healthcare in India
The evolution of healthcare in India over the past 25 years has been a mixed bag. While key health metrics such as the infant mortality rate (IMR) and maternal mortality ratio (MMR) have come down substantially, healthcare expenses have shot up—a direct fallout of lower public health spending. The government’s allocation to healthcare as a percentage of the country’s gross domestic product has fallen to 1.05% in 2015-16 from 1.47% in 1986-87. Read more

Police may guard water tanks in Maharashtra’s Latur town
Authorities in Maharashtra’s Latur town, which is experiencing an unprecedented water scarcity this summer, on Monday said they have decided to deploy police at water supply spots if the situation demands. Read more