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.

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

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.


Tuesday, September 27, 2016

10468 - Detection of bogus ration cards results in Rs 14,000-crore savings - Financial Express

All 24.3 crore ration cards in the country are now available on transparency portals of states/UTs, and 65% of them have already been seeded with Aadhaar

By: Sandip Das | New Delhi | Updated: September 20, 2016 7:04 AM

Moreover, 28 of the country’s 36 states/UTs have started online allocation of foodgrain while automation of supply chains has been completed in 18 (1.5 lakh of the country’s 5.3 lakh fair price shops are automated). (Reuters)

Over 2.33 crore ration cards have been weeded out since early 2013 as part of government efforts to identify the beneficiaries of the food security law. The reduced instances of ghost-lifting have resulted in annual savings of around Rs 14,000 crore to the exchequer.

Though millions of new ration cards have been issued in the same period and the law itself inflated the food subsidy bill, yet the last three years’ public distribution system (PDS) reform helped plug leakages and curbed the growth in subsidy outgo, officials said.

The reform started with digitisation of ration cards and their seeding with the unique identification number Aadhaar. All 24.3 crore ration cards in the country are now available on transparency portals of states/UTs, and 65% of them have already been seeded with Aadhaar.

Moreover, 28 of the country’s 36 states/UTs have started online allocation of foodgrain while automation of supply chains has been completed in 18 (1.5 lakh of the country’s 5.3 lakh fair price shops are automated).

As far as expunging of duplicate ration cards is concerned, close to 80% of this has been done in five states —West Bengal, Karnataka,Maharashtra, Telangana and Rajasthan (see chart). Besides, states such as Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu too, have removed significant number of such cards.

The officials added that states like Bihar, Jharkhand, Himachal Pradesh, Assam and Kerala have not shown much progress in removing duplicate ration cards from their systems. Food minister Ram Vilas Paswan has requested these states to expedite the reform, saying that transparency in the functioning of PDS is key to targeted implementation of the food security law.

Under the law, over 82 crore beneficiaries get 5 kg of foodgrain per month at heavily subsidised rates: Rs 3/kg for rice, Rs 2/kg for wheat and R1/kg for coarse grains.

“Andhra Pradesh is the first state in the country to automate all of its 29,027 fair price shops, followed by Madhya Pradesh (all 22,401 FPSs), Daman & Diu (all 51 FPSs), and Tamil Nadu (all 34,723 FPSs). Considerable progress has also been achieved in Gujarat, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan with 17,000 (99%), 11,965 (97%) and 24,649 (96%) automated FPSs, respectively. As a result, these states/UTs have been able to reduce ghost-lifting, achieve better targeting of food subsidies by authentication of eligible beneficiaries, improvement in service delivery, weeding out bad FPSs, etc.,” the ministry of consumer affairs said in a statement recently.

“With the innovative use of technology, significant progress has been reported by states/UTs on PDS reforms in the last two years. States must focus on the reduction of inclusion and exclusion errors and Aadhaar validation so that no eligible beneficiary is denied entitlement under the PDS scheme,” Paswan said.