Aadhaar and privacy, we are now a days hearing a lot about it. If it breaks the right to privacy of a citizen mentioned in the constitution of India then why does our government still want to implement the scheme?
Before that, let me put a little glance on what Aadhaar is all about?
The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) which is a central governing agency of India have an objective to collect the biometric and the demographic data of a person and then store it in a database and finally provide a 12 digit unique identity number to that person which we know as AADHAAR. Biometric data means collecting the physiological characteristics of body like retina scan, iris recognition, finger print etc and demographic data means collecting the information like residential address and other contact information. Now this Aadhar is also considered as world’s largest national identification number project.
Now any Indian resident can apply for Aadhar by submitting his proof of identity like voter card, driving license and then by undergoing biometric profiling at any Aadhar center.
The benefits of Aadhar are in opening a new bank account, passport will be issued within 10 days, LPG Subsidy and in monthy pension and much more. But the main problems which is coming in the picture now is PRIVACY.
Our Constitution under Article 21 mentions protection of rights and personal liberty. The supreme court of India has asserted that in order to treat a right as fundamental right, it is not necessary that it should be mentioned directly in the constitution.
First of all, all the biometric data which has been collected or will be further collected is stored in a server and the server are in US and not in India. So there is for sure danger of illegal access in the database. Secondly, now our government have raised the question in the Supreme Court that is right to privacy a fundamental right?
It has been stated by the government that the biometric data will not be used against the person and it is totally safe. But it has also been stated that in adverse conditions, the data can be used during investigation of a crime by taking orders from the court and that too without even the knowledge of the government. Now this is the breach of the privacy of a particular person.
In my opinion. If the government is now saying that it has already spent Rs. 50000 crores on the Aadhaar till now, it should definitely look up to the benefits of its citizens rather than looking on the amount of money which has already been spent. What’s good in spending the money on something if it does more harm than the benefits. Keeping the issue of money aside, it even puts a question mark on a citizen’s privacy concern. We can only be sure about a thing going smoothly, until it is in front of us and managed by us as far as I can see it. How can I be sure that whatever which is of utmost importance to me will be managed by other in a proper way. Also, the data can be used by taking permission from the magistrate in the cases which are of adverse nature. We all know that it’s not too hard to take permission from a magistrate and this will definitely breach our right to privacy more than ever. Also, once the 12 digit unique identity number is provided to you, it cannot be deleted from the servers as there is no such procedure. I think now, keeping all the things aside, government rather than questioning Supreme Court should itself take steps so that its citizens remain safe. We the people of India, cast our vote so that government can run in proper way and also that our fundamental rights stays protected. This is the least thing which a citizen can expect from its government. It does not matter whether UPA or NDA is running the government, if they are not able to protect the fundamental rights of a citizen. What’s stored in womb of the future is not known, but it is sure that if we want a better protected future, proper decisions will have to be taken by the government just not to run the country but to make it shine.