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, August 4, 2016

10222 - PM adopts conciliatory note as the way forward with states - Business Standard


The PM's speech at the Inter State Council, however, didn't mention restructuring of discom debts or UDAY, where political support of the states is most needed

Aditi Phadnis  |  New Delhi 
July 16, 2016 Last Updated at 15:12 IST



Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said states should leverage 96% adult enrolment in the Aadhaar programme and use it to reduce kerosene consumption. Surprisingly, he praised the prompt efforts of the government of Karnataka, run by rival Congress, for homing in on this and snapping up 75% of the subsidy as direct grant to the state. He urged others to follow this example. 

Education was the other issue he flagged in securing the cooperation of the states to roll out uniform policies, especially in primary education.

The PM’s speech at the Inter State Council, however, had no mention of the restructuring of discom debts or UDAY which is where the political support of the states is most needed, as the restructuring will have to factor in the issue of power tariff and subsidies.

Citing kerosene as an example where states can use Aadhaar to their advantage he said: “Electricity connections are increasing in villages. The Union Government will provide 5 crore new cooking gas connections over the next three years. The supply of LPG will further increase. All these efforts have a direct bearing on the consumption of kerosene. Recently, the Chandigarh administration declared the city a kerosene-free zone. Now, the Union Government has launched a scheme, under which, if there is a reduction in the consumption of kerosene by a State, the Centre will disburse 75 per cent of the resultant savings in subsidy, as grant to that State. The Government of Karnataka, while moving swiftly on this initiative, has sent its proposal to the Petroleum Ministry. This has been accepted and the grant has been disbursed to the State Government. If all States decide to reduce kerosene consumption by 25 per cent, and actually do so, they can receive about Rs 1,600 crore as grant this year”.

The PM’s speech had copious references to Bharatiya Janata Party icons including Deen Dayal Upadhyaya, Swami Vivekanand and former NDA Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, but he stayed away from contentious political references or referring to ongoing feuds with states, including Delhi, Bihar and others which have consistently attacked the Centre for emasculating their powers.

The agenda of the Inter State Council which is meeting for the first time in 10 years – the last meeting was in 2006, during the United Progressive Alliance regime – had the M M Punchhi report on division of administrative and other policy formulation powers as the most important item on the agenda.

The PM said that states have never been as financially empowered as they are today. “With the acceptance of the 14th Finance Commission recommendations, the States’ share in central taxes has increased from 32 per cent to 42 per cent. This means that States now have greater financial resources to utilize in accordance with their requirements. I am happy to share that the total amount received by States from the Centre during 2015-16 is 21 per cent higher than the amount received in 2014-15. Similarly, Panchayats and Urban Local Bodies will receive Rs 2.87 lakh crore during the period of the 14th Finance Commission, which is substantially higher than last time.”

He said that the rights of states had been kept in mind even in revenue received from the auction of natural resources. “Auctions of coal blocks will yield Rs 3.35 lakh crore to States in the years to come. Auctions of other mines will yield an additional Rs 18,000 crore to states. Similarly, through amendments to CAMPA Act, we are attempting to free up about Rs 40,000 crore lying idle in banks, for disbursal to States” the PM said.

On education, the PM emphasized that both quality and quantity must be kept in mind and the Centre and the state governments must work together on providing quality primary education.

The PM also touched upon the sensitive issue of internal security. Law and order is a state subject, but the PM referred to more unity on subjects of internal security, something that state governments have expressed their resentment about, as the centre’s intelligence agencies tend to bypass and overrule state agencies. Putting the issue frankly on the table, the PM said: “We have to discuss internal security challenges confronting the country, the solutions to these challenges, and mutual cooperation in this regard. The internal security of the country cannot be strengthened until we focus on intelligence sharing, ensure greater coordination among agencies, and equip our police with modern approach and technology”.