Wednesday, July 7, 2010

UIDAI Is Avoiding And Escaping From The Unconstitutionality Aspects

Ram K Kaushik

The unique identification project of India (UID project), subsequently renamed as Aadhar project of India, is in controversies from the very beginning. Even the basis of establishment of unique identification authority of India (UIDAI) is in question as neither Aadhar project nor UDIAI are supported by any law. The truth is that Aadhar project and UIDAI are testing the limits of Indian Constitution.

Both Aadhar project and UIDAI are clearly in violation of Indian Constitution still the Indian government is spending hard earned public money as if it is in a charity mood. It is not understandable how Indian government can spend even a single rupee upon an unconstitutional project and illegal body.

Further, Aadhar project would also be clubbed with other e-surveillance projects like national intelligence grid (Natgrid), Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS) Project of India (CCTNS Project), etc.

The cyber law of India has been made a fa├žade to indulge in unconstitutional e-surveillance and Internet censorship exercises in India. The information technology act 2000 (IT Act 2000) was amended to achieve this objective.

Although the Natgrid project was stalled due to lack of procedural safeguards to protect privacy, Aadhar project is moving unregulated and without rationale basis.

It would be good idea if the Indian government initiates a public debate in this regard and then come up with suitable laws to cover the activities of aadhar project and UIDAI. Till such time, both Aadhar project and UIDAI must be temporarily suspended. Further, Nandan Nilekani must also do at least something to show his commitment and respect to civil liberties like right to privacy and right to data protection.