Aadhaar

The UIDAI has taken two successive governments in India and the entire world for a ride. It identifies nothing. It is not unique. The entire UID data has never been verified and audited. The UID cannot be used for governance, financial databases or anything. It’s use is the biggest threat to national security since independence. – Anupam Saraph 2018

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 scholarUsha Ramanathandescribes 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

In the Supreme Court, Meenakshi Arora, one of the senior counsel in the case, compared it to living under a general, perpetual, nation-wide criminal warrant.

Had never thought of it that way, but living in the Aadhaar universe is like living in a prison. All of us are treated like criminals with barely any rights or recourse and gatekeepers have absolute power on you and your life.

Announcing the launch of the#BreakAadhaarChainscampaign, culminating with events in multiple cities on 12th Jan. This is the last opportunity to make your voice heard before the Supreme Court hearings start on 17th Jan 2018. In collaboration with @no2uidand@rozi_roti.

UIDAI's security seems to be founded on four time tested pillars of security idiocy

1) Denial

2) Issue fiats and point finger

3) Shoot messenger

4) Bury head in sand.

God Save India

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

10855 - Civil liberties group warns Aadhaar becoming mandatory - Biometric Update



February 20, 2017 - 
The Citizens Forum for Civil Liberties (CFCL) has complained that despite repeated reminders from Indian courts that Aadhaar cannot be made mandatory, government violations continue.
According to an article by The Wire, the organization has determined that “in blatant disregard of the Supreme Court’s directions, the finance ministry has communicated a ‘common strategy’ to be adopted by banks to achieve specific targets under Aadhaar” despite the fact that Aadhaar enrolment is supposed to be “free and voluntary”.
Aadhaar is the 12-digit unique identification number issued by the Indian government to every individual resident of India. The Aadhaar project aims to provide a single, unique identifier which captures all the demographic and biometric details of every Indian resident. Currently, Aadhaar has issued over 900 million Aadhaar numbers. Over one billion people have now been enrolled for the project, which initially was only used for the provision of social services. The Indian government’s next intention is to extend Aadhaar to the majority of consumer financial transactions.
The Wire story notes that “the department of financial services has fixed timelines for achieving 100% Aadhaar seeding” and “that Aadhaar will be used as an identifier for all centrally-funded scholarship schemes” to be linked directly to Aadhaar associated bank accounts.
Though Aadhaar is non-mandatory, according to the government’s own submissions to Indian high courts, the Citizens Forum for Civil Liberties worries that government policies concerning resident adoption of new financial and social services has made registration a de facto requirement.

As an example, the Indian government recently announced its intention to link food ration cards to Aadhaar in an effort to eliminate fraud. While the government does not indicate that using the biometric registration scheme is mandatory in this instance, its stated goal is to eliminate the current card-based system in order to reduce fraud. The only way to efficiently achieve this objective is to effectively register everyone using the program, making the use of Aadhaar mandatory, in practice, for food ration users.
While the courts and the government itself has said that Aadhaar is voluntary, Prime Minister Modi is intent to register all Indian residents, in order to implement his scheme of expanded social services, which includes a new universal healthcare scheme, along with universal financial services. The government also wants to expand the use of the Aadhaar biometric system for national security and crime-related surveillance.

As a consequence, analysts expect a continuing tension between the official, voluntary definition of the scheme and the nature of its actual implementation by the national government