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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Friday, April 28, 2017

11159 - Give us your religion, caste, Aadhaar: HRD to all college teachers - Indian Express


Teachers who are yet to furnish personal details have another month to comply. Moves are also afoot to create a similar students’ database next year.

Written by Jay Mazoomdaar | New Delhi | Updated: April 27, 2017 8:26 pm

Acknowledging that religion and caste identities of individuals will not help check duplication, Subrahmanyam said “those parameters were already part of the survey” process.

To set up a national teachers’ portal and detect “fake teachers” in the country, the Ministry of Human Resource Development has, over the last four months, profiled at least 60 per cent of more than 15 lakh university and college teachers, complete with individual details such as religion, caste, Aadhaar and phone numbers.

Teachers who are yet to furnish personal details have another month to comply. Moves are also afoot to create a similar students’ database next year.

R Subrahmanyan, Additional Secretary, HRD Ministry, told The Indian Express: “We believe there are a lot of ghost lecturers. These are teachers who show up in multiple institutes, the ones not run by the government. Individual details such as Aadhaar numbers will help us identify such duplication.”

Acknowledging that religion and caste identities of individuals will not help check duplication, Subrahmanyam said “those parameters were already part of the survey” process.

“Getting all the details directly from individuals will now reduce the workload of institutes that prepared the abstract for the Ministry in the past. It will also reduce mistakes,” he said.
Since 2010-11, the government has been conducting the annual All India Survey on Higher Education (AISHE). But this is the first time that individual profiles of the teaching staff has been sought. Until last year, every institute provided generic data on their teaching staff with numerical break-ups under the heads of designation, selection mode, gender, category (general/SC/ST/OBC), religion (Muslim/other minority) and disability.

For AISHE 2016-2017, in addition to the existing data collection format (DCF), a new Teacher Information Format (TIF) has been introduced “to collect data on teachers profile to create ‘Gurujan’ — a teachers’ portal (gurujan.gov.in).”

Asked if the University Grants Commission (UGC) was instrumental in introducing the TIF in AISHE this year, Professor Ved Prakash, whose term as the Commission chairman ended earlier this month, said: “The HRD Ministry conducts the survey and analyses the data. The UGC only helps by asking the institutes to provide data. You have to talk to the Ministry about the survey formats.”

On the question of privacy being compromised, Subrahmanyan said: “Initially, we may not make gurujan.gov.in open to public. We will not make any personal information public. The data will be absolutely safe with the National Informatics Centre (NIC). But I don’t think putting someone’s Aadhaar number in public is a problem as long as the information linked to the number remains protected.”

Many in the teaching community, however, remain unconvinced. “Whether they want to make it public or not, creating a database identifying individuals on the basis of religion and caste is a reckless idea, particularly in the prevailing atmosphere. Data is always vulnerable to selective leakage,” said a Chandigarh-based lecturer who is yet to furnish personal details in TIF.

“This is not only about privacy. Who stands to benefit from the big data? Will our Aadhaar numbers be made available so that economic profiling helps foreign interests keen to set up campuses here hire efficiently? Will we profile students next to target high-income parents who can afford education loans necessary for private institutes,” asked a Delhi-based lecturer who was unsure if he could hold out any further against “persistent TIF reminders”.

Subrahmanyan, in fact, confirmed that the government wanted to create a students’ portal in line with Gurujan next year.
“Once the teacher-specific data from the AISHE website is shifted to the Gurujan portal, we plan to make a similar student portal, may be next year, so that all three can be used together seamlessly. We are still considering all the possibilities,” he said.

Sources said the HRD Ministry took stock of the survey’s progress with state-level coordinators on Tuesday and decided to extend the April 13 deadline by “a month or so” to maximise coverage.

In June 2015, the government amended the University Grants Commission (Returns of Information by Universities) Rules, 2004, by introducing a penalty — reduction of annual grant by up to 25 per cent and other punitive action as the UGC or the Centre may deem fit — for failure to provide information on AISHE or for “any other purpose” as directed by the UGC.
“Many institutes do not receive any funds from the UGC. Anyway, we are thinking of incentivising rather than penalising to ensure compliance. For example, our ranking framework will be based on AISHE from next year,” Subrahmanyan said.
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First Published on: April 27, 2017 3:42 am