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.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

11228 - Aadhaarocracy’ a breach of ethics? - TNN

Sharad Kohli | TNN | May 3, 2017, 03.15 AM IST

GURUGRM: With the state government making Aadhaar mandatory for issuing of birth certificates, will Aadhaarocracy create another level of bureaucracy? And does the act of getting babies enrolled in the UIDAI involve a breach of ethics

The Unique ID Authority of India may predate the Modi government, but the current dispensation has been over-eager to give it a big push. Haryana, however, is not the first state to obligate that mothers and fathers must register their newborns. To some, the thought of photographing newborns, or taking their fingerprints, to create an identity, is plain wrong. The doctors, though, don't believe so. They're more worried about the increased strain on an already overstretched profession.

Getting Aadhaar registry done at the time of birth is not at all a bad thing, according to Dr Ragini Agrawal, senior gynaecologist and medical director at the city's W Pratiksha Hospital. "If the government is making it mandatory for everybody to have an Aadhaar card, nothing like getting it made at the time of birth because it is the right time," she told TOI. But, she maintained, the duty of documenting and processing the IDs should fall on the government. "It should not be the responsibility of the doctors, since already doctors have a lot of paperwork to do. "When we send the birth details of the baby to the registrar's office, at that time, before issuing, they should hold a camp in the hospital, say once a month, so all the delivered babies can get registered at that time by government officials, who will then issue the birth certificate, and, alongside, the Aadhaar card. "Fingerprints are not possible unless they have the ink, ink which is not toxic for the baby," Dr Agrawal added. 

Dr Lata Nagpal, of Nagpal Nursing Home, doesn't feel there's anything improper about the policy. "I don't think so - what's unethical in it?" she queried. But this is an onus doctors could do without. "It's a little difficult because to fill everything online becomes a little tedious. For, as soon as the baby is born, the parents have to keep the name, then they have to fill the name and send it. That part is a little difficult. So it's more of a burden on the doctors."

Dr Ritu Jain, of Vardhman Medicare Centre, agrees. "As such, it is a good move, but putting it all on the hospital becomes problematic, because this is in no way related to clinical work." There are other challenges, as Dr Jain points out. "The thing is that so many times the parents do not have their Aadhaar card, and the babies' fingerprints keep changing with the passage of time. So even if you link the babies' Aadhaar card with the parents' cards, things will change after one year, and after five years."