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, November 8, 2016

10497 - Maharashtra in favour of making Aadhaar must for school final exams - The Hindu

MUMBAI, September 27, 2016

Hepzi Anthony



Students in a school run by the Mumbai municipal corporation.

Aadhaar card has been made mandatory for students appearing for the Class X and Class XII examinations in February/March 2017. Students will also have to fill their Aadhaar numbers in the examination application forms, according to a recent statement issued by the Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education (MSBSHSE).

These forms are generally filled in around December every year. “We are intimating students and parents much in advance, to give them time to apply and get it,” said G.K. Mhanane, chairman of MSBSHSE. The board issued the statement on September 23.

Mr. Mhanane said for the last two years, students had been asked for Aadhaar numbers, but it was not compulsory. “This year, we are making it mandatory since we feel we have given them sufficient time to get it. Aadhaar would help us detect bogus candidates, who fraudulently appear in lieu of some other students. The number is important since we intend to link all students with Aadhaar and track their educational progress.”
When asked if students not having Aadhaar cards will be barred from appearing for the examinitions, he said, “We will not be able to bar students, but we are insisting that we want all of them to have Aadhaar.”

The State School Education department will be tracking the progress of students from Class VII, Class VIII and Class IX. It will also keep an eye on whether students of some particular schools are being deliberately failed in Class IX. This directive will have no bearing on the Class X examination of schools affiliated to CBSE or ICSE.

Advocate Rahul Narayan, who appeared in the Supreme Court against Aadhaar, said, “This is completely wrong on the part of the government, since the SC has clearly stated that Aadhaar cannot be made compulsory to get any kind of service. I would imagine that some students approach the court and get a stay on this order.”

“What about those students who do not wish to take Aadhaar or are not able to take it due to some technical malfunction of Aadhaar mechanism; after all biometric is not a foolproof system.”

But the teaching community is open to the idea. Seema Shaikh, principal of Pradnya Bodhini High School, Goregaon, said: “Last year, when the board had asked students for Aadhaar number in exam application forms, though it was not compulsory, it had us worried since many parents complained about not having it. We contacted the local corporator, who got an Aadhaar enrollment camp organised on our school premises. Almost all our students and 95 per cent of their parents were enrolled. We were prepared for Aadhaar made compulsory this year since we knew that such a decision was in the offing.”

The school has already made Aadhaar mandatory in their admission forms and school leaving certificates. “Other countries have some form of identification systems in place. If the government is trying to do something good, then why not be part of it?”

The writer is a freelance journalist