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.

August 24, 2017: The nine-judge Constitution Bench rules that right to privacy is “intrinsic to life and liberty” and is inherently protected under the various fundamental freedoms enshrined under Part III of the Indian Constitution

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the World; indeed it's the only thing that ever has"

“Arguing that you don’t care about the right to privacy because you have nothing to hide is no different than saying you don’t care about free speech because you have nothing to say.” - Edward Snowden


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


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.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

9880 - Government fixes 2017-end target for 100% Aadhaar-enabled DBT - Economic Times

Aman Sharma, ET Bureau Apr 25, 2016, 05.24AM IST

NEW DELHI: Beneficiaries getting subsidies through Direct Benefits Transfer (DBT) into their bank accounts have crossed the 30-crore mark and the government has now fixed a 2017-end target to transfer all subsidies through an Aadhaar-enabled DBT.

In February, the centre transferred Rs 4,707 crore to 30.01-crore beneficiaries through the DBT mechanism, but only 35 per cent of such transfers — Rs 1,630 crore to be precise — were using the Aadhaar Payment Bridge (APB) while the rest were using simple electronic fund transfers into bank accounts of the beneficiaries, as per a report sent to the the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) and accessed by ET.

"With the new Aadhaar Act in force now, government has to aim to make all payments through the APB to eliminate any chance of leakage or payments to wrong beneficiaries. There is now a deadline of December 2017 for 100 per cent Aadhaar-enabled DBT payments," a top government official told ET.

To achieve this, the government is now on a campaign mode to complete Aadhaar seeding in its databases and DBT bank accounts which stands at 63 per cent at present. The target is to complete 100 per cent Aadhaar seeding by December 2016 into bank accounts of those receiving the three major benefits — MGNREGA, LPG Pahal and the National Social Assistance Programme.

Out of the 30.01-crore beneficiaries and Rs 4,707-crore monthly payout under all the 57 schemes under DBT at present, nearly 29.95-crore beneficiaries and Rs 4,470 crore is paid under the three above-mentioned schemes. "But only 16 per cent of MGNREGA payments are through APB, which is very low," an official said.

To reform the Public Distribution System (PDS) and Food Subsidy, the government is aiming at portability of obtaining rations anywhere in the country through Aadhaar-enabled ration cards now by March 2017. The NITI Aayog is monitoring seeding of Aadhaar number in 90 per cent of ration cards by that date on the lines of a pilot scheme in Krishna district.
Kerosene subsidy, part of PDS, is planned to be brought on the DBT platform by March 2017. The longest target is for fertiliser subsidy coming under DBT — end of 2018. The centre will do a pilot DBT of subsidy in fertilisers in 2016-17 in 20 districts. "All this will culminate into 100 per cent Aadhaar-enabled DBT by 2017-end," an official said.

ET had earlier reported that the government has already passed orders on March 31, bringing all subsidy schemes under the DBT — whether the benefit is paid in cash or kind, to an individual, institution, agency or NGO. The scope of DBT, as per the March 31 orders of the centre, now stands enlarged to cover all Central Sector (CS) schemes and Centrally-Sponsored Schemes across all the ministries and departments.