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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Thursday, April 14, 2016

9835 - Why is the UIDAI cracking down on individuals that hoard Aadhaar data? - Business Standard


Private firms' offer to print Aadhaar details on plastic card a breach of law

Alnoor Peermohamed  |  Bengaluru 
April 13, 2016 Last Updated at 08:35 IST



The billion-strong citizen identification system, Aadhaar, has given rise to businesses keen on illegal harnessing of this private data, say the authorities.

Outfits are offering services to print the Aadhaar details on plastic cards, something the Union information technology ministry warned against on Monday. These entities charge anywhere between Rs 50 and Rs 600, and are listed on e-commerce websites, apart from own online presence.

Under the Aadhaar law, collecting and storing of the data by private companies without the user’s consent is a crime. Monday’s warning from the ministry to e-commerce marketplaces such as Amazon, Flipkart and eBay to disallow merchants from collecting and printing such details was a result of this.

This newspaper could not find any listings of Aadhaar printing services on Flipkart but there was one on Amazon (taken down) and no less than five such listings on eBay.

PrintMyAadhaar is one of the more well organised outfits operating in this space. “Get your E-Aadhaar printed on a PVC card for easier handling,” reads their website. Users are prompted to fill their Aadhaar details on the website, pay Rs 50 and have the card sent to their houses. PrintMyAadhaar even offers discounts for bulk orders.

“Collecting such information or unauthorised printing of an Aadhaar card or aiding such persons in any manner may amount to a criminal offence, punishable with imprisonment under the Indian Penal Code and also Chapter VI of  The Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016,” read the statement from the ministry.

Currently, Aadhaar stores a person’s name, date of birth, sex and address, apart from their biometric data.

While the biometric data isn’t available to these PDF printing shops, the rest of the information is, according to Srikanth Nadhamuni, chief executive officer of Khosla Labs and a former head of technology at the Unique Identification Authority of India. However, collecting this data poses no security risk to the Aadhaar infrastructure, he added.

“Allowing somebody to accumulate large amounts of data from Aadhaar users in general is not a good practice. We should ensure that the Aadhaar details of people remain private and it should only be up to the discretion of the end-user to share this,” said Nadhamuni.

Some security experts say Aadhaar does pose a security risk, as it makes available an individual's details in the public domain. Several institutions are treating Aadhaar just like any other proof of identity.

“Transactions that should have been conducted using biometric authentication are being conducted just by presentation of paper documents. What is happening most commonly is that people are giving a printout or photocopy of their Aadhaar acknowledgement as their proof of identity to get a SIM card. The risk here is that somebody can get a mobile number against your name,” said Sunil Abraham, executive director of the non-profit Centre for Internet and Society.

He says the other technical issue with Aadhaar is the lack of a smart card that stores a person’s information, as in a digital signature. Due to the lack of this, people don’t know what information to keep private and what to make public. Conventional security techniques would have had a person keeping their PIN private (as with a bank account). If this personal PIN would have been saved on a smart card, which users wouldn’t have had much to worry about.

“In the case of Aadhaar, the authentication factor and the identification factor are in the public domain, because many people might have your UID number and people release their biometric data everywhere. Due to this broken technological solution, we are now through policy putting band-aids, saying people should not disclose their UID number unnecessarily,” added Abraham.