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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Wednesday, July 12, 2017

11595 - The Dark Aspects Of Aadhar! - Shillong Times

By Public On Jul 11, 2017

Editor,

Most people in Meghalaya have been thrown into a welter of anxieties regarding the issue of Aadhar given that it was previously reported that Meghalaya was being exempted from its purview. Of late, however, it has been made known that Aadhar has become mandatory nation-wide in order to avail public benefits, for banking transactions, filing of income tax returns etc. And in sequel of this fresh order, I see common people, government employees and even Catholic priests and nuns jostling for space to get themselves included in the Aadhar registration.

However, it is mind-blowing to recount that a few months back a lawyer who goes by the name of  Shyam Divan had in his stellar submission legally argued that by making Aadhar compulsory the BJP led NDA govt. has arguably promulgated a sweeping regimentation more oppressive than what our fore-fathers had experienced in the last colonial era. Divan has further emphasized that by way of letting finger prints imprinted and scanning of our iris on a certain mechanical device, we are virtually renouncing our basic Right to Privacy and by virtue of this self-assertive action we are literally transforming ourselves into a dog tethered under an electronic leash being pursued and tracked by the powers that be, throughout our life span, thereby any inalienable rights premised on privacy are ironically robbed off in this democratic Republic, of the world’s largest democracy founded on the sufferings of our patriots nearly a century ago.

 Those selfless leaders must now be turning in their graves at the grim thought that now we are conversely ruled, not served, by our own elected-welfare govt. since we have been obliged to disown the core components of our body. Indeed, this govt. has initiated a violence of sorts against another individual by imposing this Aadhar regime.

I’m afraid that, through the mechanism of Aadhhar, free speech, right to self-acquired property and legally disposing the same are at risk. The essence of the Constitution is to check-mate the dictatorial powers of the state from being a voracious parasite on its own denizens or to arbitrarily send anyone to jail for the expression free speech a la the student leaders of JNU some months back; or if one eats his/her choice of food being repugnant to the majoritarian Hindu Rashtra, led by Praveen Togadia, the VHP leader, who the BJP dreadfully fear lest they lose the 2019 elections.

                Had Modi been sitting in the opposition bench in Parliament, he could, with his gift of the gab, have successfully torn to shreds any attempt to even initiate the idea of Aadhar. 

However, since presently he is at the helm, things have dramatically turned otherwise. Being apprehensive, as I am of this Aadhar scheme, that it might have adverse impact especially on us the tribals, and being in concurrence with what the West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee stated on June 17h last that: “The poorest of the poor, the marginalized people will be the worst sufferers if Aadhar is made mandatory unilaterally,” I, therefore, as of now would prefer to exclude myself from the parameters of the latter. 

Significantly, the implementation of this scheme could assuredly put the political rivals on the back foot and perceptively the ploy would turn out to be a political game of one –upmanship. And given the prevalent social circumstances vis-à-vis Aadhar, I personally agree to a fault what John Locke, the 17th Century English philosopher had said: “Every man has a property in his own person. This nobody has any right to but himself.”

Yours etc.,
Jerome K. Diengdoh
Shillong – 2