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.

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

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.


Saturday, June 10, 2017

11515 - Nandan Nilekani says Aadhaar ID system designed like a platform of innovation; plans to launch societal platform EkStep with wife - Financial Express


The former chairman of the Unique Identification Authority of India, Nandan Nilekani in his acceptance speech of the Nikkei Prize 2017 on June 4 praised the Aadhar ID system by saying that it has been designed like a platform of innovation.

By: FE Online | New Delhi | Published: June 7, 2017 1:57 PM

Nandan Nilekani praised the Aadhar ID system by saying that it has been designed like a platform of innovation. (Source: PTI)

The former chairman of the Unique Identification Authority of India, Nandan Nilekani in his acceptance speech of the Nikkei Prize 2017 on June 4 praised the Aadhar ID system by saying that it has been designed like a platform of innovation. “The Aadhaar ID system has been designed like a platform of innovation, like the internet or GPS. Early signs are emerging of various innovative uses of the platform… This has been enabled by creating a set of layers above the JAM infrastructure, which allows presence-less and paperless applications,” he said.

Nilekani said that having worked in Infosys for almost 28 years, he had talked about the benefit of getting every Indian a unique ID and he was finally given a chance to implement that by then-Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2009 by letting him lead this project. He added that there were two purposes of Aadhaar: inclusion and efficiency. Nilekani said that he believed having such a platform would have helped people who had migrated.

However, given the size and diversity of India, Nilekani said the project faced several challenges like establishing the uniqueness and to establish the scale of speed. “The project faced several challenges. The first was how we establish uniqueness… This had to be done without most people having a “root” document like a birth certificate. It was decided that the only way to do so was by biometric deduplication. This meant taking a person’s biometric (in this case, the fingerprints of both hands and the iris prints of both eyes) and comparing them to the entire set to ensure a person was not in the database twice,” he said.

“The second challenge was scale at speed. To cover a billion people, the system had to do more than one million enrollments a day. Moreover, it required at peak time more than 30,000 enrollment stations… Scale in the technology was achieved by using an internet class open source software-based architecture,” he added. Nilekani added that advanced mobile-to-mobile payment platform called UPI (Unified Payment Interface) will further boost India towards a cashless economy.

Talking about the challenges faces by developed countries, Nilekani said they can be solved in a sustainable way, by using technology wisely. He revealed his plans to start a societal platform with his wife Rohini for the same. “My wife Rohini and I are funding one such societal platform as a philanthropic initiative called EkStep to make learning opportunities widely available. Being selected for this very prestigious Nikkei Prize has reinvigorated our efforts to solve social challenges leveraging technology,” he concluded.