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.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

11440 - SC to hear pleas against Aadhaar notifications - Indian Express

Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi pointed out that similar applications challenging notifications issued under the Aadhaar Act were pending before other benches of the court.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi | Updated: May 20, 2017 7:23 am

The Supreme Court on Friday declined to stay the Centre’s notifications linking Aadhaar to social welfare schemes. However, it agreed to hear the petitions challenging Aadhaar-related notifications before June 30 — the deadline set by the Union government for beneficiaries of government schemes to subscribe to Aadhaar.

Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi pointed out that similar applications challenging notifications issued under the Aadhaar Act were pending before other benches of the court. However, the bench of Justices A M Khanwilkar and A M Sinha said it would be appropriate to hear all these pleas together to “avoid multiplicity”, and fixed the matter for hearing on June 27.
The bench recorded the arguments of the AG as well as senior counsel Shyam Diwan, appearing for petitioners Shanta Sinha and Kalyani Sen Menon, who had sought interim relief against making Aadhaar mandatory for some services.

Rohatgi submitted that there was no urgency for hearing the matter. “I have serious objections. Identical prayers were made in another petition six months ago too. In that case, a stay was sought. Notice was issued but no interim relief was granted,” he said adding that “this petition and the earlier one are identical para by para… It is an abuse of the process of the court,” he said. When the bench asked Diwan if this was true, he said the earlier writ petition was filed before the notifications linking Aadhaar to social welfare schemes were issued.

Referring to a September 2016 order of the Supreme Court, he said, “The citizen has an expectation that the state will follow the Supreme Court order that Aadhaar will be voluntary. Issues raised are of tremendous importance as far as democratic functioning of the state is concerned. The entire architecture of Aadhaar is surveillance nature…”

The court then asked Diwan, “If you have already filed petition for similar relief, why the second petition for similar relief?” The counsel pointed out that the petitioners were different in the various matters.

The two sides agreed that the matter be heard in June. Diwan sought an urgent hearing, saying the government had fixed a June 30 deadline for beneficiaries of schemes to subscribe to Aadhaar. The AG denied there was any such deadline. Diwan, however, pointed out that though the deadline for midday meal scheme had been extended to September 3, the deadline for other schemes remained the same.

Rohatgi countered the petitioners by saying that a total of 115 crore Aadhaar cards had been issued and that none of the beneficiaries had approached the court with any grievance so far.
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