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, September 8, 2016

10385 - ‘India has perfect ecosystem for building innovative businesses’ TNN


TNN | Sep 5, 2016, 04.00 AM IST

BENGALURU: India's a land of opportunities for entrepreneurs. And these startups stars would know. 

The country's technical and professional talent base, easy access to powerful new technologies and a multitude of problems were seen as the right combination for creating a perfect ecosystem to build innovative businesses for India and the world. That's the message from speakers at the second edition of The Economic Times Startup Awards 2016 in Bengaluru on Saturday who underscored the potential of Indian entrepreneurs. 

Nandan Nilekani, co-founder of Infosys and the first chairman of UIDAI, the government body that issues Aadhaar cards, said the biggest opportunity today is that Indian consumers and businesses will be data rich before they are economically rich. "This provides a big arbitrage opportunity," he said, indicating that the vast amounts of digital data being created, combined with the high-trust network available on the back of initiatives like Aadhaar, can potentially drive numerous online businesses.

Union minister for roads, transport, highways and shipping Nitin Gadkari asked entrepreneurs to team up with the government to unlock the "Rs 10-lakh-crore opportunity" in reusing waste products. "People talk about turning knowledge into wealth, I want us to also turn waste into wealth," he said, noting how waste from hair salons in Nagpur was being effectively used in bio-fertilizers for agriculture and how waste and plastic was used in building the Delhi-Meerut highway. 

Sachin Bansal, co-founder and executive chairman of Flipkart, bemoaned traffic woes in big Indian cities like Bengaluru. He, however, pointed out to Gadkari that it is also a multi-billion dollar opportunity for private enterprise. "Today, there is a law in Karnataka that doesn't allow anybody to compete with the BMTC (the city transport corporation). That's a big problem. About 45% of Bengaluru's traffic goes on 7,000-8,000 buses. We should allow private players to make use of the opportunity," he said, hinting at the app-based private bus aggregator services that state governments appear loathe to encourage. 

The awards night saw a galaxy of entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, angel investors and government officials. It started with a panel discussion, followed by an interaction with Gadkari, the awards presentation and finally a music show. The Indian startup ecosystem has been surging in recent years — Kavin Mittal's Hike became the 10th Indian unicorn (private ventures with a valuation of at least $1 billion). Times Group CEO Raj Jain noted the concerns around the slowdown in funding for startups. He, however, said given the low and negative interest rates globally, there will always be capital available for innovative and sustainable startup ideas.

Gadkari's presence provoked many in the audience to highlight transport issues in big cities. To a question on the backlash against cab aggregators, he asked the startups concerned to absorb traditional players, such as the kaali-peelis in Mumbai, into their businesses. To a question from Tarun Mehta, co-founder of Ather Energy, which is building an electric scooter, on creating charging infrastructure, Gadkari promised a prompt policy resolution. Gadkari also said efforts were on to increase central funding for city transport infrastructure. 

Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant admitted the government needed to do a lot more to simplify regulations and minimise paper work to encourage startups. But Kunal Bahl, co-founder of Snapdeal, noted that it is far easier to do business today than it was 25 years ago. "We must make use of that opportunity," he said.

Bhavish Aggarwal, co-founder and CEO of Ola, described India as a land of creative opportunities. Ajit Isaac, chairman & MD of Quess, which had a hugely successful IPO recently, said, "We are living in the best time for opportunities. I have more opportunities than my father had and what my daughter will have."