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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Tuesday, July 25, 2017

11625 - Nilekani moots law for individual’s control over data - The Hindu



NEW DELHI, JULY 22, 2017 19:18 IS

Companies or governments must return user data on demand' under law, says ex-UIDAI chief Infosys Technologies founder and the former chairman of the Unique Identification Authority of India Nandan Nilekani has mooted a new data protection and empowerment law to ensure that individuals have control over their data and can ask service providers to return their data stored with them.

Acknowledging that privacy issues currently being considered by a nine-judge Supreme Court bench are important, he said the larger issue is to get citizens to use their own data more effectively and backed China's approach of compelling companies to host Chinese users’ data within the country, instead of overseas.

“We are seeing platforms that accumulate user data rapidly disrupt industries, wield disproportionate influence and create silos because data is their asset. This leads to data domination… it’s already there and policy makers should start worrying about it,” Mr. Nilekani said at the Delhi Economics Conclave, adding that countries around the world are waking up to the issue.

Terming data the most important resource in the current century, Mr. Nilekani said that India must have a strategic policy position on data-related issues, specifically on and national security and data colonisation (your data belonging to someone who isn’t under your legal jurisdiction) , privacy and a new anti-competitive paradigm where the winner takes it all.
“If we can’t trust anybody, then give data back to the people. That’s the best way to solve this problem… by putting the user at the centre of it all. Where there is data collected in India by anybody, be it an Indian or international company or government, I should have the right to get my data back,” he said, stressing that it is very important to create a data empowerment law that enshrines such rights for individuals.

The architect of the Aadhaar programme said that ‘inverting the data’ — by putting users in charge of their own data —will help defend privacy too.

“The privacy argument is that (giving data to) private companies is fine because you give consent. I don’t think anybody who has signed the consent for any product, has read what it says. Fundamentally, you have to either take it or leave it. The best that we can have – where I can negotiate terms with the service provider on what they do with my data and that defends privacy,” he said, suggesting regulations on how companies can splice or dice user data.

“When you come out with a data protection and empowerment law, you also have to talk about data sovereignty and where is that data. The Chinese are very clear, they say you want to do business in our country, keep the data here,” he pointed out.
“This way, you address the issue of privacy, data colonisation and competition. This is what can be called a data democracy. The time is now because India is now adopting digital at an unprecedented pace,” Mr. Nilekani asserted.