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


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


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.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

10888 - SC's remarks reflect exasperation, evoke reaction from experts - Business Line

Citizens and executive of this country have to accept and obey order of the apex court, says SC
Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 
March 5, 2017 Last Updated at 18:16 IST

A view of Supreme Court of India building in New Delhi. Photo: PTI

Burdened with a huge backlog of cases and a steady rise in litigation, the exasperation of the Supreme Court has come live with some recent remarks reflecting helplessness that its orders are not being followed, with legal experts expressing varied views on it.

The observations like "Nobody listens to our orders" and "why is there a mistrust", coupled with comments like "citizens and the executive of this country have to accept and obey orders of the Supreme Court," have hogged the limelight in the recent past, but critics are of the view that the judges should not shy away from giving unambigous directions.

"All cases are not judicially manageable," said senior advocate K T S Tulsi but added that it does not in anyway come in the way of the apex court in giving directions.

Skeptical of such observations, Additional Solicitor General Pinky Anand said the issue was not about defying orders, but the apex court has to take into account the time needed for implementation of the orders by the competent authorities, which follow a defined process.

Disapproving such observations, senior lawyer Vikas Singh said the apex court was not exercising its powers correctly and the government was taking full advantage of it.

"The Supreme Court is not issuing directions but is hoping that the government will do something. It should not expect from the government but be clear in what kind of assistance it requires from it.

"I feel there is a lack on the part of the Supreme Court in exercising its powers. The government is taking full advantage of it," Singh said.
However, Anand, who as a law officer has to defend the government, said such observations did not mean that there is a defiance against the apex court's orders.

"You cannot say it (government) is not listening. It has to be seen under what circumstances the directions or orders can be followed. The question is the time-frame within which the government can follow the directions as it is answerable to the people.

"Supreme Court passes orders in a broader sense, while the government works under a process. We bring a law through a process," she added.

Her view was partially shared by Tulsi, who is also a Congress Rajya Sabha MP. He said the apex court cannot simply give "diktats" and expect them to be followed and some matters are not judicially manageable.

"As per the Constitution, all authorities are bound by Supreme Court orders but some cases are not judicially manageable. For example, the Jallikattu case. The game has values and beliefs attached to the people. You cannot simply give diktats and expect everyone to follow.

"In a water dispute, there is so much of unrest in society due to the scarcity. The top court cannot judicially manage it. It does not realise which matter can be judicially managed and which cannot," Tulsi said.

The observation that "Nobody listens to our orders" had come on March 1 during the hearing of a plea seeking directions to states and Centre to implement massive reforms in the police force across the country.

The Jallikattu issue had led to the remark about law and order situation in Tamil Nadu, with the apex court hitting out at the authorities with the statement like "What was the need for the situation? Why does this situation crop up?

"There was a situation which needed to be controlled. Please tell your executive that maintaining law and order situation is its prime duty. You please convey this," the court had said.

"Citizens and executive of this country have to accept and obey order of the Supreme Court unless it is modified," was made during the Cauvery water dispute between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu