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Tag: aadhaar

Controversy around vaccine gets muckier

The controversy surrounding vaccination for preventing cervical cancer, one of the most deadly cancers to afflict women in India, refuses to die.A week ago, Prime Minister’s office shot a letter to Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) to examine the safety and efficacy of Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine for preventing Cervical Cancer. On the other hand, Delhi state government around the same time has announced a roll-out of free HPV vaccine jabs for school girls.After receiving a complaint from Rashtriya Swayam Sevak Sangh (RSS) based organisation Swadeshi Jagran Manch wrote to the PMO objecting the introduction of HPV vaccine in India, MoHFW’s office of Deputy Commissioner (Immunization) has been asked to look into the complaint.In the meanwhile, East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) has started a drive to vaccinate up to 5,000 girls between 11 to 13 years with the controversial HPV vaccine. “We will identify school girls who are eligible to take this vaccine, link the vaccination to their Aadhaar card, train teachers to seek parents consent , arrange transport to take the girls to Delhi State Cancer Institute and get them vaccinated,” said Dr Sharda Jain, Chairperson, Delhi Gynaecology Forum.When questioned about controversies around it’s safety and efficacy, Jain retorted, “It is absolutely safe to administer HPV vaccine to girls.”Ashwani Mahajan, co-convenor of SJM said, “While health is a state subject, the state government should also keep in mind the safety of it’s population while administering a vaccine.”The letter forwarded by PMO office to MoHFW stated, “It has been alleged that HPV vaccine has highest rate of adverse effect among all vaccines in use as per World Health Organisation.”

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UP Aadhaar Racket: Police bust gang that made fake identifications, one arrested

Police in Uttar Pradesh’s Shamli district on Sunday claimed to have busted a gang which made fake Aadhaar and PAN cards with the arrest of one person.The accused was arrested from a house in Khurgan village in Shamli’s Kairana during a police raid on Saturday, officials said.A car, a laptop, a camera and a large number of fake Aadhaar and permanent account number (PAN) cards were seized from the accused, Javed, station house officer (SHO), Kairana police station, Bhagwat Singh said.The SHO said two of Javed’s accomplices managed to give police the slip during the action and a hunt has been launched for them.Interrogation of the arrested accused was underway, Singh added.Also readAadhaar debate: Open to improving privacy framework, says JaitleyAadhaar is a 12 digit unique-identity number issued by the government to all residents based on their biometric and demographic data.

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Airtel Payments Bank MD and CEO Shashi Arora resigns

Airtel Payments Bank Managing Director and CEO Shashi Arora has resigned in the wake of the firm’s eKYC licence suspension by Aadhaar-issuing body UIDAI.”Shashi has decided to move on to pursue opportunities outside of Airtel. We wish Shashi the very best for his future endeavours,” the company said in a statement.Arora has been working with Airtel in senior leadership roles since 2006. He was appointed MD and CEO of Airtel Payments Bank on June 1, 2016.”He has been an asset for Airtel and over the years has contributed to the company s growth story. Having led the operations in key telecom circles followed by building a strong DTH business, he has laid the foundation for Airtel’s payments bank operations,” the statement said.The Unique Identity Authority of India (UIDAI) had barred Bharti Airtel and Airtel Payments Bank from conducting Aadhaar-based verification of customers using the eKYC process.The action was taken following allegations that Bharti Airtel was using the Aadhaar-eKYC based SIM verification process to open payments bank accounts of its subscribers without their ‘informed consent’.UIDAI on Thursday allowed Bharti Airtel to use Aadhaar for re-verification of its mobile customers till January 10 with stiff riders after it returned Rs 138-crore LPG subsidy remitted to the unsolicited payments bank accounts.It, however, maintained that Airtel Payments Bank eKYC licence will remain suspended till final enquiry and audit report.

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Fingerprint, iris issues affect Aadhaar work, impact salaries

Hansa Jadhav from the B ward of Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) did not receive her November salary as her fingerprints were of poor quality and could not mark her attendance in the biometric machine introduced by the BMC about two months ago.The BMC has made biometric attendance compulsory for all employees and even declared salary cut for those who fail to clock biometric attendance in their respective office.In December, the BMC administration decided to cut the salary of around 4,000 employees for not marking attendance in biometric systems. “I used to get my salary by first week of every month. But, till December 20, I did not receive my salary for November ,” said Jadhav.Udaykumar Shiroorkar, assistant commissioner of B ward took the matter to administrative department and Human Resource departments of the BMC.”Jadhav’s fingerprints are poor and it was not recorded when Aadhaar was being generated. So, she could not mark her attendance through the biometric machine,” said Shiroorkar. He added that she, however, had come to office all working days. Surprisingly, the BMC had stopped providing stationery for muster attendance soon after it introduced biometric attendance.In another case, Arun Karkhanis, 73, did not receive his pension for the last six months. The reason quoted was that the biometric machine couldn’t read his finger print. “Now, the bank has asked me to update my Aadhar as my finger prints do not come,” said Karkhanis. He added that the bank or his office from where he retired is unwilling to accept any other documents. “It is not possible to for me to go Aadhaar centre at 3 am to stand in queue to get my Aadhaar upadate,” said Karkhanis. He added that his office has agreed to pay pension till December but I have to submit my updated Aadhaar by January to continue to get pension.Sudhir Naik, deputy municipal commissioner said that there are around 140 employees in BMC who have such problems and now, the civic administration will not push them for biometric attendance.FOR THE RECORDAadhaar records finger prints, iris and face information while registering. However, if any person is having problem in finger print, it is mentioned in the acknowledgment copy whether the finger quality is good. In such cases, the Aadhaar operator mentions these while registering which appear in the acknowledgment copy.

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Min backtracks, says Aadhaar not mandatory for property deals

The central government on Tuesday ruled out any move to make Aadhaar mandatory for property transactions. In a written reply in the Lok Sabha, Union Minister of State for Housing and Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh Puri said the rural development ministry had advised states and union territories to explore the possibility of Aadhaar authentication for registration of properties under the provisions of the Registration Act, 1908.However, he clarified that such a move was not mandatory but would be based on consent.Earlier last month, the minister had favoured linking Aadhaar to property transactions in a way similar to the linkage of the national ID number with bank accounts. He had said such a move would go a long way in sucking out black money from real estate and also help in cracking down on benami properties. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has also indicated several times that the government would crack down on benami property. Aadhaar linking with property could form a part of that drive. Puri was the first union minister to state that Aadhaar linkage with property transactions would be made mandatory.However, on Tuesday in response to questions, the minister said, “At present, there is no proposal to make Aadhaar linkage mandatory in property transactions.” To other questions, including one on whether the government had set any time-frame for linking the unique identification number for property dealings, he said, “(The question) Does not arise.” So far, up to 140 government schemes have made linking with Aadhaar mandatory to avail their services.

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UIDAI blocks Bharti Airtel’s e-KYC key

The UIDAI has temporarily barred Bharti Airtel and Airtel Payments Bank from conducting Aadhaar-based SIM verification of mobile customers using eKYC process as well as e-KYC of payments bank clients.In an interim order, UIDAI has suspended e-KYC licence key of Bharti Airtel Ltd and Airtel Payment Bank Ltd with immediate effect, according to people aware of the development.For the past few weeks, there have been allegations that Bharti Airtel has been using the Aadhaar-eKYC based SIM verification process to open payments bank accounts of its subscribers without their ‘informed consent’. UIDAI also took strong objection to allegations that such payments bank accounts are being linked to receive LPG subsidy.This order means Airtel would not be able to, in the interim, carry out ‘electronic-verification’ or link mobile SIMs of its customers with their Aadhaar number though eKYC. Also, Airtel Payments Bank will not be able to open a new account with Aadhaar e-KYC. However, accounts can be opened through alternate methods, if available.When contacted, an Airtel spokesperson said: “We can confirm that we have received interim order from the UIDAI regarding temporary suspension of Aadhaar linked e-KYC services till their satisfaction on certain processes related to Airtel payment banks onboarding of customers.””We are engaging with the authority and are hopeful of an early resolution. We are also undertaking to complete the said actions on priority and have commenced thorough checks of our process flows. Being compliant to all guidelines is paramount to us. Any inconvenience to our customers is regretted,” the spokesperson said.More than 23 lakh customers have reportedly received as many as Rs 47 crore in their Airtel bank accounts, which they did not know had been opened. Airtel Payments Bank has about 50 milion users.UIDAI also asked PricewaterhouseCoopers to conduct an audit of Bharti Airtel and Airtel Payments Bank to ascertain if their systems and processes are in compliance with the Aadhaar Act.The first notice was sent in September but replies of Airtel was found to be unsatisfactory. Subsequently, another notice was issued in November where also the reply of Airtel was not found satisfactory.

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SC extends deadline for Aadhaar linking for all services

The deadline to link one’s Aadhaar for all services including bank accounts and mobile phones has been extended till March 31, 2018, the Supreme Court ordered on Friday.Existing Aadhaar cardholders will have to furnish their details to open new bank accounts. Those who are yet to receive their unique identification number will have time until March to complete the process. Non-Aadhaar cardholders can open new accounts provided they furnish proof of application for an Aadhar card.”Those who already have Aadhaar cannot go on open a new bank account without Aadhaar. If they have Aadhaar, they will have to furnish it to the bank,” a bench led by Chief Justice Dipak Misra clarified on Friday.”You see, there is no question of producing Aadhaar enrollment application for those who already possess Aadhaar cards,” Justice D.Y. Chandrachud, who authored the interim order for the five-judge constitution Bench, said.On Thursday, a five-judge constitution bench that included Justices AK Sikri, AM Khanwilkar, DY Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan heard several arguments against the Centre’s direction for mandatory linking of one’s Aadhaar to almost 139 welfare schemes.The top court will now hear every challenge to the constitutionality of the Aadhar in January.

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Aadhaar linking deadline extended

The Centre plans to push the deadline for making Aadhaar card mandatory for 131 services, including banking services, from December 31 to March, 2018. A notification in this regard will likely be issued on Friday, the Centre told the Supreme Court (SC) on Thursday.Attorney General K K Venugopal told a bench headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra the deadline to link Aadhaar number with mobile phones could not be extended beyond February 6, 2018, since the order was imposed by the top court in another PIL.The top law officer’s submission came on the heels of a mentioning made in the Aadhaar matter before a bench that also comprised justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud.The bench then said it would set up a Constitution bench to hear petitions challenging the constitutional validity of the Aadhaar Act next week. At the same time, it would also decide on other related notifications issued by the Centre and see whether any interim orders need to be passed.Representing a batch of petitioners opposing Aadhaar, senior advocate Shyam Divan requested a direction seeking no coercive action against those who have not yet submitted their unique 12-digit identity number and a stay on the enrollment process.Venugopal, however, opposed the move and submitted that the Centre was ready to defend their pet project. “There cannot be a stay on the Aadhaar scheme that has gone on for years,” he said.The top law officer then added that a committee involved in bringing out a Data Protection law, headed by former SC judge BN Srikrishna, was likely to submit its final report by February.Earlier in August this year, a nine-judge Constitution bench declared the right to privacy a fundamental right and said that individual cases challenging Aadhaar would be separately decided by a five-judge Constitution bench.On October 30, the bench said it would hear the Aadhaar matter in November, almost five years after the first plea was filed. Several petitions in this matter have been pending since the top court referred the matter to a larger bench nearly two years ago.
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Yogi Adityanath

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Centre offers Rs 2.5 lakh for every inter-caste marriage involving a Dalit

The government has removed the income ceiling of Rs 5 lakh per annum for recently married inter-caste couples, where either the bride or the bridegroom is a Dalit, to become eligible for a financial incentive of Rs 2.5 lakh. The ‘Dr Ambedkar scheme for social Integration through inter caste marriage’, which was started in 2013 to promote inter-caste marriages, was till now applicable only for couples with a total annual income of Rs 5 lakh or lower. The objective of the scheme is to “appreciate the socially bold step,” and to extend financial help to the couple to enable them to “settle down in the initial phase of their married life.”Also readOdisha doubles incentive to encourage inter-caste marriagesThe scheme targets at least 500 such marriages each year, though it has not crossed 100 in any year so far since its inception. Other eligibility criteria of the scheme is that the marriage should be registered under the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955.Other pre-conditions are that it should be their first marriage and the proposal should be submitted within a year of marriage.According to a report by The Indian Express, the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, in a recent order to states, has directed that “the condition that the total income of the newly-wedded couple will not exceed Rs 5 lakh per annum” be scrapped , and there will be “no income limit for incentive under the scheme”.Also readRamdas Athawale blames inter-caste marriages for atrocities against Dalits; demands right to carry gunsThe ministry also made it mandatory for the couples to submit their Aadhaar numbers and details of their Aadhaar-linked joint bank account. Although the Centre has target of 500 couples a year, it has never been met since the scheme was started in 2013. Only five couples were given the incentive in 2014-15. In 2015-16, 522 applied under the scheme but only 72 applications were approved. Last year, only 45 of the 736 applications were approved.
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Yogi Adityanath

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Rs 9,046-crore nutrition mission gets go-ahead

The Cabinet on Friday approved the National Nutrition Mission (NNM), giving nod to a funding of over Rs 9,046 crore, till 2020, to combat malnutrition in the country.According to the government, the policy aims at bringing down the incidence of undernutrition and low birth weight by 2 per cent every year, and reduce stunting from 38.4 per cent, as per the National Family Health Survey, to 25 per cent by 2022. Currently, 43 per cent of children under five years of age in India are underweight, while 48 per cent suffer from stunting due to undernutrition. The policy will affect over 10 crore beneficiaries, the government stated.The policy is a part of the government’s efforts to end malnutrition by 2022. Last week, in a high-level meeting, PM Narendra Modi called for a comprehensive movement to end malnutrition and said that with such high incidence of malnutrition, India’s image of growth and development was tarnished.The mission will first be rolled out in 315 districts this year, and will be extended to 235 more districts in 2018-19. The remaining districts will be covered in 2019-20. The Rs 9,046 crore budget will be funded in a 50:50 ratio, by the Centre and the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD).The policy will be implemented by the Ministry of Women and Child Development, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Minsitry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, and government think-tank NITI Aayog. A technical committee, formed by the NITI Aayog and comprising dieticians, doctors, and experts will decide on the delivery system, WCD minister Maneka Gandhi said.Finance minister Arun Jaitley said infection and malnutrition were deeply connected. “Since the incidence of stunting in India is high, we need inter-ministerial cooperation. The first 1,000 days of a child’s life, including the nine months of pregnancy, are crucial,” Jaitley said.As part of the policy, there will be real-time monitoring of take-home rations and the updates of health parameters of beneficiaries through smartphones given to anganwadi workers. The Android smartphones will be given to over 10 lakh anganwadi workers. They will have an operating system version of 4.4 or above, which will support 3G, 4G, and Wi-Fi connectivity, with a screen size of 5 inch, and a RAM of 1GB.Ministry officials said the mission beneficiaries will need Aadhaar cards, and those without Aadhaar cards will be assisted by anganwadi workers, who will get Rs 500 as incentive. WCD officials said they were trying to ensure over 85 per cent enrollment by December 31, including that of six-month children. When pointed out that Aadhar guidelines prohibit children below five years of age, officials said their cards will be linked to their mothers’.Policy goalsAims at bringing down undernutrition and low birth weight by 2% per yearReduce stunting from 38.4% to 25% by the year 2022
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Yogi Adityanath

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Aadhaar to track benami property: PM Modi

Saying that he was ready to pay a political price for fighting corruption as part of his government’s efforts to change the “broken system” of the past 70 years, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Thursday asserted that there was a visible behaviour change in the country.He also insisted that his government’s decision to demonetise high-value banknotes and usher in a new Goods and Services Tax (GST) had scared the corrupt scared and brought black money back into the economy.Modi also said the Aadhaar number would be used to track “benami property”.”There is a behaviour change in the country you can see today… the corrupt are afraid to deal in black money and there is a healthy and clean corporate culture… Going forward, organised corruption will come down by these steps. I may have to pay a political price for the path I have taken but I’m ready for it,” he said. The Prime Minister was speaking at the inaugural session of a Leadership Summit organised by a newspaper group.His statement assumes significance since it is coming in the midst of the ongoing Gujarat Assembly election campaign, where the opposition Congress and others have tried to corner him over the shortcomings in the implementation of the GST as well as the effectiveness of the demonetization.”This government cannot be stopped by anyone from taking steps which will bring permanent changes in the system and ensure the interest of the nation.”He added, “I think those who feel this country cannot be changed using a magic wand are grappling with frustration and disappointment,” Modi said.He also said the information on “black economy” that the government had collected after demonetization would help India in its war against corruption.”Demonetization brought in proof of black money… finished parallel economy,” he claimed.Saying that Aadhaar, the Constitutional validity of which is pending before a bench of the Supreme Court, was an irreversible change, Modi said this and other schemes like Swachh Bharat, Jan Dhan bank accounts, Ujjwala cooking gas scheme, etc, had given the poor of the country a new belief in their country.”In 2014, people didn’t vote only to change the government. They voted to change the system; they voted for a system that is permanent, irreversible…a system that is corruption-free, citizen-centric and development-friendly.” he said.Referring to the “policy paralysis” during the UPA regime, Modi said, “When we came to power what did we get as legacy? The condition of the economy, governance, fiscal order and banking system were in a bad shape. .. Bhrashtachar hi shishtachar tha (corruption was the norm).”PM said…This government cannot be stopped by anyone from taking stepsDemonetization brought in proof of black money… finished parallel economy
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Yogi Adityanath

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Ready to pay political price for steps taken for better India: PM Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said that he is ready to pay the political price for the steps taken by him for a better India and asserted he would not be deterred.Mr. Modi, who was delivering the inaugural address at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit in New Delhi, said the government was committed to developing a development-centric eco-system, which was free of corruption and is citizen-centric.He also said that post demonetization, the black money, which was part of a parallel economy, has now become part of the formal system.Also readPM Narendra Modi congratulates Indians on winning black money battleInaugurating the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit here, Modi said data mining after the note ban is also helping the government track down those involved in corruption.Appreciating the role of Aadhaar in delivering services to the people and also checking pilferages, he said the system would also work as a tool to track down benami properties.
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Yogi Adityanath

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Nahargarh Fort Death: Is it connected to Padmavati? Some unanswered questions

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A dead body was found hanging on the ramparts of Jaipur’s Nahargarh Fort on Friday, with a threat note engraved on the rocks in protest of the movie ‘Padmavati’.The deceased has been identified as Chetan, a resident of Jaipur’s Shastri Nagar from the Aadhaar card found in his pocket. He was working at a jewellery shop.However, questions are being raised over the death. An investigation is on to find out whether it was suicide or murder.There were dozens of messages written in charcoal, however, no charcoal marks were found on the hands of the deceased. ALSO READ Padmavati Controversy: Delhi HC dismisses plea, says such petitions encourage agitatorsInterestingly, each message mentioned Padmavati. One message reads, ‘Chetan Tantrik mara gaya ‘. Another message mention that they (the ones who have hanged the body) do not hang effigies.The film has been in the eye of the storm following protests from conservative groups over alleged tampering with historical facts, a contention which filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali has denied repeatedly.With the protest against Padmavati escalating every day, the matter now seems to have taken a communal angle.A few days ago, effigies of stars, including Salman Khan were hanged from Chittorgarh fort and the body of Chetan was hanged in the same way.In these messages, one thing is coincidence — the messages mention ‘Chetan Tantrik’ and the deceased has been identified as a man named Chetan. Chetan Raghav was the tantrik who was thrown out of the Chittor court and who first mentioned the beauty of Padmini (Padmavati) to Khilji.The police are exploring all angles, but it is an issue of serious concern as this is the first protest against those opposing Padmavati release. ALSO READ Revealed: Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s ‘Padmavati’ will NOT hit the UK theatres on December 1!On Thursday, Karni Sena had threatened to burn theatres in the UK after the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) cleared Padmavati for the UK audience.The lavishly mounted film, starring Deepika Padukone in the title role, and Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor, is a joint production by Viacom 18 Motion Pictures and Bhansali Productions.Several politicians have already demanded a ban on the movie, while Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Gujarat, and Rajasthan have already refused to allow a release of the movie in the state. ALSO READ Pahlaj Nihalani reacts to ‘Padmavati’ row and CBFC: Delaying the decision is shying away from job

India to offer technical expertise to 3 countries

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Indian government will closely collaborate with three countries — Iran, Denmark and Mauritius, on cyber issues.A joint working group has been set up with Iran for collaboration in the field of Information and Communication Technology (ICT), while a MoU with Denmark has been signed for future cooperation in IT related areas.Mauritius has shown interest in India’s service of Digital Locker. A joint working group already exists with Mauritius. Now, the Indian government will offer technical support and advisory services to Mauritius for setting up of Digital Locker services, Ajay Kumar, Additional Secretary , Ministry of Electronics and IT said on the sidelines of GCCS 2017.DigiLocker, is a key initiative under Digital India, aimed at transforming India into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy. DigiLocker ties into Digital India’s visions areas of providing citizens a shareable private space on a public cloud and making all documents/certificates available on this cloud.DigiLocker, a platform for issuance and verification of documents and certificates in a digital way, eliminating the use of physical documents. Indian citizens who sign up for a DigiLocker account get a dedicated cloud storage space that is linked to their Aadhaar (UIDAI) number. The service is aimed at the idea of paperless governance.Organizations that are registered with Digital Locker can push electronic copies of documents and certificates (e.g. driving license, Voter ID, School certificates) directly into citizen’s lockers. Citizens can also upload scanned copies of their legacy documents in their accounts. These legacy documents can be electronically signed using the eSign facility, according to the ministry.Recently, the government allowed people to carry driving license in their Digital Locker, which will be recognised by traffic department.Digital Locker provides access to driving license, vehicle registration certificate, Aadhaar, CBSE and other educational certificates. Till now, 8.87 million users are registered with Digital Locker and 12.14 million documents have uploaded on it.Digital Locker was launched two years ago by Prime Minister Narendra Modi under the Digital India drive. The idea was facilitate access to documents anytime and anywhere, doing away with a need of carrying physical documents.

Al-Qaeda terror suspect arrested in kolkata got fake Aadhaar card made in Karnataka

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Two days after the two alleged Al-Qaeda linkmen got arrested by officials of Kolkata Police’s Special Task Force, it was revealed that fake Aadhaar card recovered from one of them was not the only one which had been made. A total of three people were arrested by the STF team. STF sources said that upon interrogation they had revealed that the card was made in Karnataka. “There had been many such cards made there at the cost of Rs 10,000 each. Many cards have been distributed and some were under process. We are probing into how these cards with West Bengal’s address have been made from Karnataka,” said a senior STF official. He also said that Karnataka police have been alerted and together joint operations are underway to nab those behind the scam.Two of the three arrested on November 21 were members of banned Bangladeshi group Ansarullah Bangla Team (ABT) also called Ansar Bangla which has direct links with Al-Qaeda network. STF officials said that one of the arrested, 26-year-old Samsad Mia possessed a fake Aadhaar card under the name of Tushar Biswas.It was also found out that Samsad was the head of the explosive making department of the group and used to train others about how to make explosives.On November 21, acting on a tip-off, Samsad, along with Riazul Islam (25) alias Riaz alias Suman and Manotosh Dey (46) had been arrested from Kolkata Railway Station in north Kolkata between 2.30 and 3 pm by the STF. While Samsad and Riazul were Bangladeshi citizens, Monotosh was found to be a resident of Basirhat in North 24 Parganas where he has two houses and married to two separate persons. To each one he had been living with a fake identity – one of a fish dealer and other of a BSF jawan.

UIDAI admits Aadhaar details were leaked on 210 govt sites

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) has accepted that around 210 central and state government websites publicly displayed details such as names and addresses of some of Aadhaar beneficiaries. The statutory authority, in response to an RTI query, also said that it took note of the breach and got the data removed from those websites.The authority however did not specify when the breach took place but also claimed the details of Aadhaar have never been made public by it at any point of time and it is maintaining highest level of data security and integrity.In the RTI reply, the authority said, “However, it was found that approximately 210 websites of central government, state government departments including educational institutes were displaying the list of beneficiaries along with their name, address, other details and Aadhaar numbers for information of general public.”The authority also said that it has a well-designed, multi-layer robust security system in place and the same is being constantly upgraded to maintain highest level of data security and integrity.”Various policies and procedures have been defined, these are reviewed and updated continually thereby appropriately controlling and monitoring any movement of people, material and data in and out of UIDAI premises, particularly the data centres,” UIDAI said in the reply.The authority said that it carries out security audits on a regular basis to further strengthen security and privacy of data.

Over 210 government websites made details of Aadhaar beneficiaries public: UIDAI

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>More than 200 central and state government websites publicly displayed details such as names and addresses of some Aadhaar beneficiaries, the Unique Identification Authority of India has said.The Aadhaar issuing body added, in response to an RTI query, that it took note of the breach and got the data removed from those websites.It did not specify when the breach took place.It said Aadhaar details have never been made public from/by UIDAI.”However, it was found that approximately 210 websites of central government, state government departments including educational institutes were displaying the list of beneficiaries along with their name, address, other details and Aadhaar numbers for information of the general public,” it said.The UIDAI took note and got the Aadhaar data removed from the said websites, it said in reply to the RTI application.UIDAI issues Aadhaar — a 12-digit unique identification number — which acts as a proof of identity and address anywhere in the country.The central government is in the process of making Aadhaar mandatory for people to avail benefits of various social service schemes.”UIDAI has a well-designed, multi-layer approach robust security system in place and the same is being constantly upgraded to maintain highest level of data security and integrity,” the RTI reply said.The architecture of the Aadhaar ecosystem has been designed to ensure data security and privacy which is an integral part of the system from the initial design to the final stage, it said.”Various policies and procedures have been defined, these are reviewed and updated continually thereby appropriately controlling and monitoring any movement of people, material and data in and out of UIDAI premises, particularly the data centres,” the UIDAI said.It said security audits are conducted on a regular basis to further strengthen security and privacy of data. Besides this, all possible steps are taken to make the data safer and protected, the authority said.

Kanpur tipplers must give personal info to buy liquor

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Submit your pictures and personal details to buy booze. This is the instruction guzzlers in Kanpur district of Uttar Pradesh have to follow for the time being.In view of the local bodies polls, the excise department has issued a ‘farmaan’ to retail shops directing them to keep a personal records (name, address, picture and mobile number) of those buying liquor from their shops.The order was issued on the directions of Kanpur District Magistrate Surendra Singh, who is also returning officer for local bodies polls. But the diktat has not gone down well with buyers as well as sellers, with a buyer saying that the government may link his alcohol purchase with his Aadhaar.“One buyer abused me and refused to furnish details to buy a bottle of whiskey. Another almost manhandled me when I tried to click his photograph from my mobile,” said Shakti Singh, an employee of a liquor shop at Kidwai Nagar.“Our sales has become half since Friday,” rued another liquor shop owner. The district excise officer has also directed the shop owners to maintain a register and furnish details of who bought how much quantity liquor from their shops on daily basis.“We close shops at 11 pm. Who would go to the department at that odd hours to submit the details on a daily basis,” said another liquor vendor.“I had asked them to keep personal records of those who are buying two or more bottles of liquor or those buying in bulk to ensure that the voters are not wooed by offering them liquor by candidates,” clarified DM Surendra Singh.However, for some ingenuous tipplers, the ‘farmaan’ is not a big hindrance. They are going to adjoining districts to buy their supplies. “I didn’t get my booze on Friday so I went Unnao and stocked two bottles,” said Amit Srivastava, an executive in a private company.With business getting affected, some liquor shops are ready to flout the orders. “One shopkeeper refused to sell me a bottle, but another sold the bottle by charging a premium of Rs 5 without taking personal details,” said Santosh Kumar.POLLS ON NOV 22Order was issued on the directions of Kanpur District Magistrate Surendra Singh
In view of the local bodies polls, the excise department has issued the diktat to retailers
Has not gone down well with shop owners

Elated BJP hails Moody’s upgrade

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Elated at Moody’s upgradation of India’s sovereign credit rating, party president Amit Shah attributed it to “PM Modi’s policy of reforms and their effective implementation”. “The fact that the rating has been upgraded after 13 years shows how the Sonia Gandhi-Manmohan Singh government had destroyed the economic structure of the country,” Shah said.Reminding that recently India had improved 30 places in the World Bank’s ease of doing business ranking, Shah said, “PM Modi has laid the foundation of a new India in the past three-and-a-half years,” said Shah, adding, “During the Congress regime, the country witnessed being categorised among the Fragile-5 whose economies were in problems, but they were also a danger for the global economy.”Claiming that government during Congress rule was afflicted by “policy paralysis”, Shah said all economic parameters had seen an upward swing under the Modi government. “Consumer inflation is progressively decreasing, the fiscal deficit is down from 5.9 per cent of the GDP to only 3.5 per cent, FDI inflow has shown record increase while the government is consistently moving towards fiscal consolidation.”Meanwhile, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley termed the upgrading as ‘belated recognition’ of reforms undertaken, saying that the reform agenda would continue with emphasis on higher spending on infrastructure and in rural areas. He said the government “intends to stay the course on fiscal consolidation in the medium term” .”We welcome (the upgrade) and believe that it is a belated recognition of all the positive steps taken in India in the last few years which have contributed to the strengthening of the Indian economy,” the FM said. “It is extremely encouraging that there is an international recognition (of reforms) and the fact that this recognition merely furthers our determination to follow the track we have embarked upon. The upgrade has not happened in isolation and for the last three years the India has been the fastest growing major economy,” he added.Jaitley said the upgrade recognised the major economic and institutional reforms undertaken by the government as he listed some such as GST, sound monetary policy framework, recapitalisation of public sector banks, demonetisation and use of Aadhaar to bring formalisation and digitalisation in the economy.Meanwhile, Railway and Coal minister Piyush Goyal congratulated the FM, PM and the people of the country over the upgrade on behalf of the party.”Our dharma is to stay on path of good governance and effective delivery to people of India. Endorsements, rating upgrade, certification, surveys, election results are incidental. We are working for people of India and people have endorsed us,” Goyal said. He said the number of BJP-supported government went up from six in 2014, to 18. “By next month they will be 19 and we are fast transitioning to a corruption-free and, therefore, a Congress-free India.”Reforms outcomeJaitley said the upgrade recognised the major economic and institutional reforms undertaken by the government as he listed some such as GST, and recapitalisation of public sector banks.

Uttar Pradesh: Woman dies of hunger after shop denies ration due to no Aadhaar verification, alleges family

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A 50-year-old woman in Uttar Pradesh’s Bareilly died at her home due to starvation on Tuesday.Shakina Ashfaq died as she didn’t consume anything for past five days after being denied her family’s ration as she could be present at the food-distributing shop for biometric verification for Aadhaar, according to a NDTV report.The victim’s family alleged that they were denied the monthly quota of ration as Shakina, who was paralysed and unwell, could not attend the shop to avail her family’s share. She was marked as the family’s head in the ration card.Mohd Ishaq, Shakina’s husband alleged that his wife died only due to hunger. He said his family used to take her to the ration shop in rickshaw every month to avail their share but this time she could not go as she was unwell. The ration shop owner refused to give them anything without biometrics verification, he said. The shop owner was persistent that Shakina should come for the verification or else they won’t be entitled for the ration under the Public Distribution System.The Yogi Adityanath government is currently investigating the matter and said that the initial probe shows that Shakina died of an illness not due to starvation.Under the central government’s scheme of Antyodaya for the BPL (Below Poverty Line) families, the family can avail 35 kg of subsidised wheat, rice and sugar every month.

Hyderabad: India city offers cash to round up beggars

Critics say the move is due to a trip by Ivanka Trump, but officials deny this.

Mandatory Aadhaar display; pass for specific floors are some plans to bolster Mantralaya security

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A day after a farmer held the Maharashtra government on ransom by attempting suicide in Mantralaya, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis is believed to have instructed officials to expedite the pending proposal of beefing up Mantralaya security.After implementing the proposal, individuals will not be able to enter any floor unless they have a valid pass for the same.An officer told on the condition of anonymity told DNA that Fadnavis was in Nagpur, but was constantly in touch with officials to monitor the situation after Anand Salve, a farmer from Satara, threatened to jump off the roof of the government building. Fadnavis has also reviewed the proposal, which is being prepared jointly by the state home department and the public works department. What are the proposed suggestions?- Aadhaar card mandatory to enter Mantralaya- The compound wall will now be raised to eight feet. A wire compound wall will also be installed. – Visitor entry management system with a proper and thorough check up would be deployed.- All the vehicles would be checked by stopping at the entry gates and a separate visitor’s room would be constructed near Garden Gate leading the way towards All India Radio.- Every visitor after checking for Aadhar Card would be provided with a specific visitor’s pass which would display floor on which the visitor is supposed to go.- The security guards in ordinary attire would keep vigil on visitor movement

CBI filed 84 cases of illicit note exchange

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has registered 84 cases, including 7 Preliminary Enquiries, and unearthed Rs 396 crore relating to illicit currency exchange that took place after the government announced demonetization of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes an year ago.The 84 cases, involving 183 public servants, are related to fraudulent exchange of demonetised notes at commercial banks, co-operative banks, post offices, railways and insurance companies.Besides, 124 persons have also been found involved. Of them, 26 have been arrested. The agency has acted on more than 500 references received from general public and other agencies.CBI also conducted joint surprise checks on banks and other companies. After one year of demonetization, the government is celebrating it as “anti-black money day” while Opposition has termed it as a “black day”.During investigation, CBI has so far arrested 21 public servants and 26 private persons out of 307 accused (including public servants & private persons) found to be involved in these cases.Demonetised and new currency worth crores and large number of incriminating documents have been recovered so far. Chargesheet has been filed in 12 cases and regular department action has also been recommended in a few cases.”Some private individuals were nabbed with huge amounts of new currency. Since the restrictions on individuals in terms of withdrawals of new currency, investigation is to find out how they could come in possession of such amounts. The ongoing investigation is expected to reveal involvement of more public servants,” CBI Spokesperson Abhishek Dayal said.According to CBI, a total 59 cases have been registered mainly the fraudulent exchange of old currency notes that took place at commercial and cooperative bans, followed by Post Offices where 18 cases have been registered.Five cases have been registered against Railways and one against an Insurance Department employee.”Several shell companies were identified during the course of investigations. Concerned law enforcement agencies have been informed of these shell companies for action on their part. Misuse of Aadhaar cards or numbers of children was found in certain cases to deposit old notes. Some Cooperative banks were used by unscrupulous individuals to exchange ill gotten and undeclared money kept in cash,” CBI sources said.The CBI claimed that it was ensured that every information related to such violation of laws should be entertained and examined and if required, cases should be registered. The agency received 92 complaints from the general public which reported such illegal exchanges in various organisations, it said.Several agencies like Income Tax, Enforcement Directorate and the CBI have seized demonetised currency with face value in crores in the last one year and arrested several persons attempting to exchange their ill-gotten money or those helping them for the purpose after the Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 8, 2016 declared Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes as “invalid tender”.

Mamata Banerjee: Use ‘black DPs’ to protest GST, note ban

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In order to protest against the Centre’s twin policies of demonetization and Goods and Services Tax (GST), West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee asked everyone to change their Twitter display picture to black. She set an example by changing hers on Monday, two days ahead of November 8, the first anniversary of demonetization.She dubbed GST as Great Selfish Tax. ‘Great Selfish Tax to harass people. To take away jobs. To hurt businesses. To finish the economy. GoI failed to tackle #GST’, she tweeted.Inviting people for the protest, she tweeted, ‘#Noteban is a disaster. On #Nov8BlackDay to protest against this scam that destroyed the economy. Let us also change our Twitter DP to black’.Quick to respond was TMC MP and party spokesperson Derek O’Brien who followed suit. ‘Responding to @MamataOfficial to make DP black as form of protest for Demo scam. Appeal to all to do the same. Go black #Nov8BlackDay’, he tweeted.Party sources said GST, demonetization and linking Aadhaar with phone and bank accounts would be some of the biggest issues at the winter session of Parliament. Mamata, on October 25, during the meeting of the extended core committee meeting had said, “We were never against GST. What we objected to was the improper, unplanned implementation of GST which resulted in the misery of many.”

Banks and telecom service providers have to indicate last day for linking Aadhaar: SC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> The Supreme Court today made it clear that banks and telecom service providers will have to indicate the last date of linking bank accounts and mobile numbers with Aadhaar in their communications with customers.Currently, the last date to link Aadhaar with bank accounts is December 31 this year while for mobile numbers, it is February 6, 2018.The top court did not pass any interim order on the pleas challenging the constitutional validity of the Aadhaar Act as well as linking of 12-digit unique biometric identification number with bank accounts and mobile numbers.It said that final hearing in all Aadhaar-related issues would start before another bench in the last week of November and that bench would decide on the issue. Moreover, the Centre has already extended the deadline till December 31.A bench comprising Justices A K Sikri and Ashok Bhushan was told by the advocates representing the petitioners that “panic” was being caused among the people as the messages sent by the banks and mobile service providers were warning them the services would be deactivated if Aadhaar is not linked.”We make it clear that in the messages sent by banks and telecom service providers, the date of December 31, 2017 and February 6, 2018, shall also be indicated as the last date of linking Aadhaar with bank accounts and mobile numbers,” the bench said.The court issued notice to the Centre on four separate pleas and tagged them with the main petition which would come up for final hearing before a constitution bench.At the outset, the bench said that since another bench was scheduled to commence the hearing on Aadhaar-related pleas from the last week of November, the matters listed before it should also be decided by that bench.Senior advocate Shyam Divan, representing one of the petitioners, referred to the recent affidavit filed by the Centre and said it has been told by the government that the December 31 deadline for linking Aadhaar with bank accounts may be extended up to March 31, 2018.”The notification says the process (of linking Aadhaar with bank accounts) should be completed by December 31, 2017 or else the accounts would cease to operate. Now, they say it may be extended till March 31, 2018.Therefore, till March 31, bank accounts should not be made non-operational,” he said.He said Attorney General K K Venugopal had recently mentioned the matter before Chief Justice Dipak Misra but not made a statement that no coercive action would be taken till March 31, 2018 against those who have not linked their mobiles or bank accounts with Aadhaar.”The whole idea is not to coerce people. If they are extending the deadlines, this aspect must be clarified,” Divan argued while also raising the issue of linking of Aadhaar with mobile numbers.When the bench asked the Attorney General about it, Venugopal referred to the apex court’s judgement declaring right to privacy as a fundamental right and said in that verdict, Justice D Y Chandrachud had emphasised on a robust regime for protection of data.He said the report of Justice Sri Krishna committee, which has initiated the process of reviewing the entire issue of data protection, is likely to be ready by first week of March and that is why he had mentioned the matter before the CJI for extension of time till March 31, 2018 for linking of Aadhaar to avail the benefits of various government schemes.”It was opposed tooth and nail (by the petitioners). The court had said it will hear it in the last week of November,” the Attorney General said.When the petitioners again said the Centre should not take coercive action against anyone till March 31 next year, the bench said, “till December 31, time is already there”.”Since the final hearing in these matters would start in the end of November and time is already extended up to December 31, 2017, there is no need to pass any interim order at this stage.”However, liberty is granted to the petitioners to press prayer for stay in case the hearing does not take place or continue beyond that,” the bench said.At the fag end of the hearing, senior advocates Arvind Datar, Anand Grover and K V Vishwanathan, representing the petitioners, said the Centre cannot compel the citizens to link Aadhaar either with bank accounts or mobile numbers.Datar said that under the prevention of money laundering rules, the government cannot say that bank accounts would be discontinued after December 31 unless linked with Aadhaar.”There is no doubt that these arguments need consideration. The matter is going to come up in the last week of November and the time (to link Aadhaar with bank accounts) has been extended till December 31,” the bench said.Vishwanathan argued that the Centre should tell the banks and mobile service providers not to send messages to customers threatening them of deactivation of accounts or mobile numbers if they fail to link it with Aadhaar as the “public is in a panicky situation due to this”.On October 30, a bench headed by the CJI had said that a constitution bench would be constituted and Aadhaar-related matters would come up for hearing before it in November last.

Aadhaar mobile linking: Deadline remains February 6, says Centre

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Centre on Thursday told the Supreme Court that the deadline to link all mobile phone numbers with Aadhaar remains February 6. The Centre reiterated that production of Aadhaar was also mandatory for opening new bank accounts. The centre filed the new affidavit through advocate Zoheb Hossain. Citing an order passed by the apex court, the centre in the affidavit said it was the SC which had approved the norm for mandatory Aadhaar-mobile phone linkage in the Lokniti Foundation case on February 6 with a window of one year, reported the Times of India.The deadline for linkage of Aadhaar with the mobile phone number cannot be modified by the government unilaterally (as it is fixed by the SC),” the Centre said reports the Times of India, adding that it has decided to extend the deadline for linking Aadhaar with existing bank accounts till March 31.Earlier on Monday, while hearing a separate petition challenging the mandatory linking of mobile phones with Aadhhar, the apex court had asked the government to file its response in next four weeks. On March 23, the Department of Telecommunications had issued a notice, making it mandatory for all telecom companies to re-verify existing customers through the Aadhaar-based E-KYC process, by February 6, 2018. The directive was applicable to both prepaid and postpaid users. inked to another number provided by the user.In its fresh affidavit, the Centre said: “Until March 31, existing bank accounts will not be made non-operational for not linking with Aadhaar. But as far as opening new bank accounts are concerned, Aadhaar or enrolment ID must be given as proof of identity. For existing account holders, the deadline for Aadhaarbased verification is being extended to March 31 and no coercive action will be taken till then.”The Supreme Court is currently hearing several cases against the mandatory linking of more than 50 schemes with Aadhaar.

UP cops caught napping as B’deshi terrorist gets passport, flies to Saudi

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In an exposé, police in Saharanpur have found that a Bangladeshi terrorist going by the name of Zahir Khan, not only acquired government documents like Aadhaar card, but was also able to get an Indian passport verified and issued using which he was able to go perform Haj and settle in Saudi Arabia.Intelligence sources said that Khan, who belongs to the terrorist organisation Ansarullah Bangla Team (ABT), had been staying in Deoband for many years without raising any suspicion. It was only after an intelligence tip-off that local police began a probe to find out that everything — the address he gave and his government documents — were all fake. It was then that their worst fears were realised, Khan had been quietly working to radicalise Muslim youth.”So far we have found that 20 youths from Deoband and nearby areas in Saharanpur have gone missing,” the intelligence official said. “We suspect they are being radicalised and trained by the ABT.”To crack down on the terror menace, Saharanpur police are now scrutinising all passports that have been verified between 2007 and 2017. Deoband MLA Brijiesh Singh said the move was not directed at any community and appealed locals to maintain calm.”Only people who have made passports illegally need to worry. Those who have followed the law have nothing to fear,” he said. In August this year, the UP Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) had arrested a Bangladeshi national named Abdullah Al-Mamon who was a member of ABT as well. Abdullah, who was arrested along with a youth named Faizan Ahmad, had been staying in Deoband for several years before his arrest from Muzaffarnagar.Sources said that Faizan had been acting as a middleman in bringing radicalised youth to Abdullah who then trained them for jihad.

Meghalaya CM admits not registering for Aadhaar; says he’s concerned over right to privacy

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Meghalaya Chief Minister Mukul Sangma today said he was yet to enrol himself for Aadhaar as he shared the concern of the people over the right to privacy.”I have not registered for Aadhaar number. I share the same concern with my people. (Our) right to privacy is important in a democracy else the whole idea of democracy is diluted,” Mukul told reporters here.He said, “I and my (Assam) counterpart (Sarbananda) Sonowalji have discussed and written to the Government of India. We both agreed to move in the right direction and our stand remains and we are moving together.” “The issue is that we are in a situation which is different from other states. The kind of problem due to illegal immigration and influx is a common concern of the people of Meghalaya and Assam and the entire North East,” he added.The chief ministers of Meghalaya and Assam had earlier shot off a letter to the Centre seeking exemption from Aadhaar.”What we are saying is not to make it compulsory and binding for Meghalaya (and Assam),” he said, adding that the registration is going on in the state for the convenience of students who are studying outside the state.Sangma claimed there were “lots of confusion” with regards to registration for Aadhaar number and “we want complete clarity on the matter”.”Different authorities are giving diverse directions and inter-ministerial engagement is missing, synergy is missing and dialogue is missing,” he said.In Meghalaya, the registration for Aadhaar number has crossed over 14 per cent of the population, ahead of Assam (as per UIDAI statistics), following the resumption of Aadhaar registration in June this year.However, there is a group in the state which has been urging the people to demand the Aadhaar authorities to delete the information collected from them in the database.Over 260 people have submitted a personal letter to the Meghalaya People Committee on Aadhaar (MPCA), an umbrella organisation against Aadhaar enrolment in the state, demanding the data collected from them be deleted from the system.Several civil society groups, including the Thma u Rangli u Juki (TUR) and the influential Khasi Students Union (KSU), are leading the MPCA.”The people were coerced into giving their personal details during the enrolment. This is done without having taken the consent of the people concerned and it infringes on their rights to privacy,” TUR convener Angela Rangad said.”There are enough doubts that Aadhaar numbers will be misused in surveillance and control by the powers that be. We have to be extra careful before we commit ourselves to the unknown,” she said.MPCA secretary Auguster Jyrwa said that a campaign to collect signatures would conclude on November 3, after which they would approach authorities concerned seeking deletion of the data

5-judge Supreme Court bench will hear Aadhaar

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court said on Monday that it will set up a five-judge Constitution bench to hear all Aadhaar-related cases in the last week of November, five years after the first plea challenging the constitutional validity of the 12-digit unique identification number scheme was filed.The decision was taken by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra after Attorney General KK Venugopal sought a hearing in March. Several petitions, including those against the government’s decision to make Aadhaar mandatory for social benefits and other schemes, have been pending since the top court referred the matter to a larger bench almost two years ago.Gopal Subramanium and Shyam Divan, representing petitioners challenging Aadhaar, sought an interim stay on the linking of the identification number to bank accounts and mobile phones. Venugopal opposed the plea and submitted that the Central government was ready to argue its case.The government’s top law officer said that several falsehoods on Aadhaar were being spread. Two benches are hearing at least three Aadhaar cases.Recently, a nine-judge Constitution bench had held that the Right to Privacy was a Fundamental Right under the Constitution. Several petitioners challenging the validity of Aadhaar had raised the issue that the scheme was violative of privacy rights.On Wednesday, the Central government proposed extending the deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar with bank accounts, PAN cards and mobile phones from December 31, 2017, to March 31, 2018, but only to those who are “willing to enroll for the identification number.Meanwhile, the bench issued a notice on advocate Raghav Tankha’s plea seeking a direction to the Department of Telecom (DoT) and to mobile service providers to cease misinforming public that Aadhaar is the sole means for identity and address proof for mobile phone users.Aadhaar was started seven years ago to streamline payment of benefits and cut down on massive wastage and fraud. About 95.10 per cent of India’s population has registered for it. Critics say Aadhaar links enough data to create a comprehensive profile of citizens, and the data — containing fingerprints, iris scans, and demographic information — can be misused.

SC to set up Constitution bench to hear pleas against Aadhaar being mandatory for govt schemes

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A constitution bench would be set up to hear a clutch of petitions challenging the Centre’s decision to make Aadhaar mandatory for availing various services and government welfare schemes, the Supreme Court today said.A bench, comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud, said the larger bench would commence hearing on these petitions in the last week of November this year.Earlier today, the apex court questioned the West Bengal government for filing a plea challenging the Centre’s move to make Aadhaar mandatory for availing benefits of various social welfare schemes while asking how a state can challenge the mandate of Parliament.It also asked West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to file the plea as an individual.Recently, a nine-judge Constitution bench had held that the Right ot Privacy was a Fundamental Right under the Constitution. Several petitioners challenging the validity of Aadhaar had raised the issue that the scheme was violative of privacy rights.Senior advocates Gopal Subramanium and Shyam Divan, appearing for those opposing the Aadhaar scheme, had sought urgent hearing on the petitions.The Centre had on October 25 told the apex court that the deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar to avail the benefits of the government schemes has been extended till March 31 next year for those who do not have the 12-digit biometric identification number and were willing to have it.The petitioners had termed the linking of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) number with bank accounts and mobile numbers as illegal and unconstitutional and strongly objected to the CBSE’s move to make it mandatory for students to appear for exams.Divan, appearing for some of the petitioners, had earlier contended that final hearing in the main Aadhaar matter, which is pending before the apex court, was necessary as the government “cannot compel” citizens to link their Aadhaar with either bank accounts or mobile numbers.

431 Pakistani minorities, mostly Hindus, will be eligible to get PAN and Aadhaar cards

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As many as 431 Pakistani nationals, mostly Hindus, have been granted long-term visas by the government, thus making them eligible for PAN and Aadhaar cards as well as allowing them to buy property, a home ministry official said.The move, amidst the strained India-Pak relations, is in line with the Narendra Modi government’s policy to help minorities in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh who come to India after facing alleged persecution in their home country.”The Ministry of Home Affairs granted long-term visas to 431 Pakistani nationals last month. They are from minority communities of that country,” the official told PTI.Under the latest policy of the Centre, those belonging to minority communities in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh, namely –Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians– staying in India on long-term visas, are allowed to purchase a small dwelling unit sufficient to serve the needs of a family for self-use and suitable accommodation for carrying out self-employment.However, they are barred from buying immovable property in and around restricted or protected areas, including cantonment regions.Such communities are also allowed to obtain PAN cards, Aadhaar numbers and driving licences, take up self-employment or do business, and are allowed free movement within the state of their stay and transfer of long-term visa papers from one state to another.The 431 Pakistani nationals with long-term visas will now also be able to open bank accounts without prior approval of the Reserve Bank of India.The home ministry had also recently given security clearance to 1,800 Pakistani nationals of the Ahmadiyya community to attend the 123rd ‘Jalsa Salana’ at Qadian in Gurdaspur district of Punjab from December 29 to December 31.’Jalsa Salana’ is an annual gathering of the Ahmadiyya community.No Pakistani national was given visa to attend the congregation last year, while 5,000 Pakistani nationals had attended the event in 2015.The grant of long-term visas to a large number of Pakistanis and security clearance to Ahmadiyya community members of Pakistan were the highest in a single month in nearly two years, even as India-Pakistan relations nosedived after the January 2, 2016, terror attack in the Pathankot air base in which seven security personnel were killed.The terrorist attack on an Army station in Uri, the surgical strikes carried out by the Indian Army on terror infrastructures in PoK and the regular violation of ceasefire by Pakistani forces have further deteriorated bilateral relations.The statement of Pakistani leadership eulogising Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani after his killing in Jammu and Kashmir in July 2016 further soured the relations between the neighbouring countries.The home ministry had also approved over 4,000 visa applications of people belonging to Pakistan, Afghanistan, China and a few select countries in September.A total of 6,025 visa applications were received in September, out of which 4,057 were cleared, another home ministry official said.Prior approval is required from the home ministry for issuing visas to nationals of Pakistan, Afghanistan, China and a few other countries.The Pakistani nationals, whose visa applications were approved, would be given the travel document mostly under the medical visa category.External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has been prompt in responding to distress calls of Pakistani nationals seeking visas for medical emergencies.These medical visas were sought by the Pakistani nationals for undergoing liver transplant surgeries, cancer treatment etc, in India.

Maha Oppn demands loan waiver probe

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Maharashtra government has finally solved the mystery about why several farmers did not get money in their bank accounts despite explicit orders about loan waivers issued by the state. The officials found that the bank accounts of over 60,000 farmers were linked to wrong Aadhaar numbers.“When loans were disbursed, linking Aadhaar to accounts was not mandatory,” a government official said. “But during loan waivers, banks were asked to fill a 66-column form for each loan beneficiary, and the system wouldn’t accept information unless Aadhaar details were punched in. We believe it was at this stage that discrepancies were introduced and random Aadhaar numbers were linked to the accounts.”While the state believes the number (over 60,000 wrong Aadhaar linkages) is not really big (there are about 76 lakh loan account holders and 56 lakh farmers have applied for waiver), the issue could turn acute considering the state has only begun round one of loan waiver. In the first phase, Rs 4,000 crore is to be credited into 8.5 lakh bank accounts by November 15.“We cannot transfer money into these accounts until the correct Aadhaar details are acquired,” said an official. In some cases, several accounts that have been linked to the same Aadhaar number. “Banks have been asked to sort this out at the earliest,” said the official.As per the scheme, a farmer will not cash in hand or in his account when the waiver is disbursed; it will be credited to the loan account so that the loans are formally closed.“As soon as all the details in the system are found to be accurate, banks are expected to get the money within an hour. There is no shortage of funds,” said the official.State Co-operatives minister, Subhash Deshmukh, said the government was aware of the issue and they will be probing the matter to punish the guilty. The Opposition, however, blames the government for inefficiency and shoddy execution.

62% users upload personal info on FB: Cyber experts

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A team of five cyber experts, who recently conducted an experiment where they went through 8000 random profiles on Facebook and found out patterns, said a majority of the users are not cautious while sharing private information publicly.The experts said that the information they upload is not just about their social life, but also includes significant documents such as details about PAN, Adhaar and voter identification cards.As per data collected by scanning the general profiles on Facebook, the experts found that only 25 percent of the users have actual friends on their friends’ list. Others are mostly acquaintances or ‘online friends’, the survey concluded.”Some people have also uploaded selfies with their newly-made Aadhaar and PAN cards. This is a dangerous practice. The people who are putting out this information don’t know that somebody else might misutilise it,” said Viral Parmar, who heads a private cyber security company.Parmar along four other team members, who were professional hackers (and refused to be named) claimed that there were many cases where the PAN card number was copied and then used to duplicate the SIM cards of a user. “This is disastrous because the hacker can also get the OTPs generated for bank transactions,” Parmar added.Other experts also said that they repeatedly appeal to the public to not put out such information. “There have been multiple cases where people have shared information about private government documents such as PAN and Aadhaar cards, and have lead to cheating cases,” Jasmine Rozia, cyber cell crime branch.The experts also found that out of the 8,000 people who were included in the survey, there was only 20 percent fake profiles and 62 percent of the people had uploaded photos with personal data. There were only 18 people people who have also secured their account, the experts added. “There are so many possibilities of misusing the fake profiles on Facebook. The person with a fake profile can arrange to meet and then kidnap or rob or rape,” Rozaliya said.He also claimed that when one puts out every bit of information on the social media, there are people who might misutilise it and then stalk or harm them”, Rozia said.

100 Maharashtra farmers found linked to single Aadhaar number

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Maharashtra government’s attempt of online registration for loan waiver implementation has sent the authorities into a tizzy as names over 100 farmers have been found linked to a single Aadhaar number.The state government had earlier stressed on online registration by farmers with their Aadhaar, which is a unique identification. The government has said that the Aadhaar-based linking will avoid any duplication as well as fake accounts getting the benefit of the loan waiver. A senior official from the Maharashtra cooperation department showed a list of potential beneficiaries of farmers having a common Aadhaar number, which has become a cause of concern for the government.”We always thought that the Aadhaar number will be our key to check fake beneficiaries. Now, we don’t know how to address this challenge with so many farmers showing the same Aadhaar number. If we have to carry out a manual check, which will take weeks. The farming community is already agitated over the delay in implementation of the scheme,” the official said. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has called an urgent meeting with bankers today to address issues like this that crop up in the way of speedy implementation of the scheme.Officials of some banks also admitted that the data they received from the online registration portal Aapale Sarkar – varies the data at their in their records.The names of some farmers are missing and some do not match with the land size or type of loan. “In many cases the principal amount and interest are not matching. It leads to suspicion. Unless the state officials have verified the account and its loan amount, we cannot consider that account for loan waiver,” a senior official of a leading public sector bank.The state government had last week released a sum of Rs 4,000 crore under the first phase of the over Rs 34,000 crore farm loan waiver scheme. Responding to the Opposition’s criticism against the online system of filling forms for availing the scheme, Fadnavis last week earlier said had that not been done, the banks would have mismanaged funds. The Centre had earlier this year made Aadhaar mandatory for availing crop insurance policies.As per the agriculture ministry’s directive, banks were asked to persuade farmers to furnish Aadhaar identification card at the time of sanction/renewal/ disbursement/inspection of the loan or on visit at bank branches.

Mamata Banerjee opposes linking of Aadhaar with mobile phone numbers, says she will not do it

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has opposed the linking of Aadhaar with mobile phone numbers.Banerjee told the media that she will not do it, reported PTI.The development comes a day after a plea was filed challenging the notification of the Department of Telecom on linking of mobile numbers with Aadhaar.The plea filed by Tehseen Poonawala sought direction for quashing of the notification of March 23, issued by the Department of Telecom (DoT) and holding it ‘unconstitutional’ and ‘null and void’.Last month, a report had said that SIM cards not linked to Aadhaar likely to be deactivated after February 2018.
ALSO READ What will happen if you do not link your bank account with Aadhaar Card by December 31The apex court had on February 6 asked the Centre to put in place within a year an effective mechanism to scrutinise the details of the identity of over 100 crore existing and future mobile telephone consumers.The top court while hearing a PIL filed by Lok Niti Foundation had said it hoped that the procees would be completed in the near future and before the completion of one year.
ALSO READ Jharkhand: Girl starves to death after family denied food for not linking ration card with AadhaarThe court had suggested that the existing pre-paid mobile users, who are 90% of the total mobile users, may be asked to give identity details at the time of re-charge as done while giving fresh SIM cards to users.

Jharkhand: Mother of girl who died of starvation says villagers threatening her

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The mother of the 11-year-old girl, who died allegedly of starvation in Jharkhand’s Simdega district a few days back as her family’s ration card was not linked to the Aadhar card, has accused the villagers of threatening and abusing her for ‘defaming’ the village.Koyli Devi, the mother of the victim, said she was ‘living in fear’ as the villagers thronged outside her house and abused her family.”I have been living in fear; villagers abused me and asked me to leave the village. They thronged outside my house and abused me and threatened me as I raised the issue,” she told ANI.Following the threats, Koyli Devi and her family reportedly travelled 8 km from her village to the Patiamba village in the Jaldega block to take shelter.The police then brought them back to Simdega and deployed a security team outside their residence.The victim, Santoshi Kumari, died on September 28 after her mother was unable to feed her. The family was struck off from the government welfare rolls for not linking their ration card with the Aadhaar card.”We went to get rice, but I was told that no ration will be given to me. My daughter died saying ‘Bhat-bhat’ (rice),” said the girl’s mother, Koyli Devi.Meanwhile, Chief Minister Raghubar Das has assured that action will be taken against those found guilty in the case.Due to the increasing number of fraud cases, the Centre, for security reasons, had asked every individual to link their Aadhaar card with the ration card, LPG, PAN card or any other, failing which many people were struck off the ration card rolls in the state.

Linking Aadhaar to bank a/c a must: RBI

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Even as the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) clarified that it is mandatory to link Aadhaar cards to the bank accounts under the Prevention of Money Laundering regulations in the country, the Public Sector Banks’ Officer union has demanded that linking should be put on hold till the Supreme Court comes out with a clear directive.All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA) has also registered their protest against instructions given by some of the banks to designate certain branches as special cells for enrolment of Aadhaar.”The government should make it clear before the common citizens of the country that the seeding of Aadhaar is purely voluntary and not mandatory,” All India Bank Officers Confederation (AIBOC) said in a statement.”The advisory to this effect should also be passed to all the stakeholders,” AIBOC general secretary DT Franco said.”We also demand that the government should look for alternatives or add more workforce into banks to implement Aadhaar related works in the public sector banks.”The RBI release had added that these rules have statutory force and as such banks have to implement them without awaiting further instructions. “Some news items have quoted a reply to a RTI application that Aadhaar number linkage with bank accounts is not mandatory,” the Central Bank had said in a tweet. “The Reserve Bank clarifies that, in applicable cases, linkage of Aadhaar number to bank account is mandatory under the Prevention of Money-laundering (Maintenance of Records) Second Amendment Rules, 2017 published in the Official Gazette on June 1, 2017.”Though the Supreme Court said that Aadhaar is not illegal and privacy not absolute, a final judgment on the need to make Aadhaar mandatory is still awaited. So if government has the final say, then bank accounts that are not linked to Aadhaar will become in operational from January 1, 2018.However exemptions are given to small accounts where the annual credits in the account does not exceed Rs one lakh and aggregate of all withdrawals and transfers in a month does not exceed Rs 10,000.Meanwhile the All India bank officers Confederation (AIBOC) said in a release ever since the government notification amending the PML Rules, 2005, under which bank accounts that were not seeded with the Aadhaar number by December 31 would cease to be operational, banks have gone into an overdrive to get their account holders to furnish Aadhaar details – and are desperate to head-off a situation where branches might end up swamped with frantic customers as the deadline nears.

Civic body to crack down on ‘ghost employee’ menace with e-transfers

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a bid to crack down on the menace of “ghost employees”, the North civic body is all set to pay salaries to its employees directly through a single click. The civic body is going to launch the system on Thursday and for this it has tied up with the Union Bank to facilitate the transactions.At present, officials said, the salaries are usually delayed and are paid in a number of slots with some getting it early and others having to wait indefinitely.The direct transfer will help in automatically revealing how many staff in what category, scale and gender etc were paid, said officials.”The direct transfer will throw up details of all the employees from the top to the level of sanitation workers. Until now, the salary would come to each zone from the headquarters and will then be sent to staff in different slots through RTGS. This was a complex and time-taking system allowing scope for corruption, which will now end with the new system,” said a senior officer.The MCD has been marred by the concept of invisible or “ghost employees” in the past. “The concept of ghost employees, which mainly was highlighted in the case of people getting employed as safai karmacharis and not showing up or labourers at construction sites, ended with the introduction of biometric attendance. However, to cut down on the long and tedious process leading to delay in paying off salaries, as well as to leave no scope for corruption, we decided to introduce the new system of direct transfer,” the officer said.Officials also said that they are planning to link the biometric system with Aadhaar cards to ensure there are no loopholes in attendance.The Delhi High Court had earlier pulled up the civic body asking the corporations to monitor the attendance of the sanitation staff. The Court had observed that there was a “huge manpower” of cleaning staff — 15,000 in East MCD; 26,000 in North MCD and 23,000 South MCD. Despite this, the court contended, the city remained full of garbage.EARLIER REPRIMANDDelhi High Court had earlier pulled up the civic body asking the corporations to monitor the attendance of the sanitation staff as they had “huge manpower” despite which the city remained full of garbage

From Karl Marx to GST ‘Diwali’: Highlights of PM Modi’s Day 1 in Gujarat

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Prime Minister Narendra Modi in in Gujarat on a 2-day trip. This is the third visit by the Prime Minister in his home state within a month.The Day 1 was packed with ground-breaking ceremonies and rallies.Here are 10 major updates on this political story:1: PM Modi’s most crucial speech was in IIT- Gandhinagar where he pitched for Digital India campaign.2: Addressing a gathering at the inauguration of IIT-Gandhinagar, PM Modi advised students of IIT to be concerned about the poor, whose contribution had enabled them to study at the premier institute.3: While opening his speech, PM Modi remembered his childhood days when he sold tea at the railway station in his hometown Vadnagar. “You all are IITians. But I am the one who is just a ‘teaian’, a chaiwala” PM Modi said, evoking laughter from the audience.4: PM Modi said, “In western countries, there is a theory by Karl Marx which is very prominent — that of the ‘haves and have nots’. The political ideology of the West also grew accordingly. But, we cannot afford to adopt it. There should not be digital divide here so that some people in the nation are experts in technology and some remain untouchable or deprived. This is the greatest challenge before us. For social integrity and development, the digital divide should be removed.”5: The prime minister said his government has blended JAM– Jandhan account, Aadhaar and mobile phone–to ensure people become digitally literate.6: Under attack over the Gujarat model of development, PM Modi took a swipe at the Congress over economic progress under its governments, saying for them it meant installing a hand pump and asking for votes in return. 7: Lauding the changes made in the GST on Friday, PM Modi said, “Today, I have seen newspapers from across the country. They carry headlines that Diwali has come 15 days earlier.”8: PM Modi said the government had earlier stated that it will study the GST for three months following its implementation and then fix the problems.9: The prime minister also laid the foundation stone for a four-lane Cable Stayed Signature Bridge to be built over the sea at the cost of Rs962.43-crore, connecting Okha and Beyt-Dwarka.10: PM Modi also laid the foundation stone for the six-lane national highway to be built between Ahmedabad-Rajkot, covering a distance of 231.31km.

UP government aims to link all beneficiary schemes with Aadhaar

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Yogi Adityanath-led BJP government in Uttar Pradesh has decided to link all its beneficiary schemes to Aadhaar card for transferring subsidy directly to the accounts of the beneficiaries.A decision to this effect was taken on Tuesday at the Cabinet meeting. The Cabinet has also decided to introduce legislation in this regard during the winter session of the UP Assembly.Briefing mediapersons on Cabinet decisions, the government Spokesperson and Health Minister Dr Siddharth Nath Singh said that the state government aims to link all its beneficiary schemes with Aadhaar card to bring them under the direct benefit transfer (DBT) in a bid to check leakage, pilferage and corruption.To begin with, he said that all pension schemes, government scholarships and public distribution system (PDS) will be linked with Aadhaar to transfer the amount direct ly into the accounts of the beneficiaries. “This will also bring in accountability and the government will also get to know how much budgeted fund was distributed to beneficiaries,” he pointed.The government has also amended existing rules for opening more kerosene shops in villages.

Aadhaar cards for Raavan? UIDAI social media team comes up with epic response!

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In today’s day and age, a good social media team is necessary for a brand – whether it’s a government or a private operator – to do well. Social media teams usually directly connect on platforms such as Twitter to address customer grievances and in some cases, give tongue-in-the-cheek replies to the occasional Smart Alec.A few years ago, the Zomato team was given a huge thumbs up after they responded to comedian Tanmay Bhat’s jibe that their new logo looked like a sperm. Their response was this:On Saturday, the Aadhaar Twitter handle wished its followers a Happy Vijayadashami on Twitter with an illustration of arrows piercing the Demon king Ravana’s head.However, one person decided to get cocky and asked the Aadhaar social media team how they would issue 10 Aadhaar cards to Ravana, as he had 10 heads.This was Aadhaar’s epic response.We can say it’s the mic drop moment of the day so far!

Centre extends deadline for obtaining Aadhaar for availing government services by three months

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Centre extended the deadline for obtaining Aadhaar for availing government schemes and subsidies by three months to December 31.The extension is, however, only for those who are yet to apply of Aadhaar, an order issued by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology said.As many as 135 schemes (of 35 ministries) including the free cooking gas (LPG) to poor women, kerosene and fertiliser subsidy, targeted public distribution system (PDS) and MGNREGA will be covered by the extension.The government had previously made quoting of Aadhaar necessary for availing government benefits and subsidies like those on cooking gas LPG. Those who did not have Aadhaar were asked to procure the unique identification number by September 30.This deadline has now been extended till December 31, the order said.”As a result of the review of welfare schemes covered and to provide the benefits of such schemes to all eligible beneficiaries of the scheme, it has been decided to further extend the stipulated date in all such notifications up to December 31, 2017,” the order said.The extension would also apply for Employees’ Pension Scheme of 1995, scholarships, housing subsidy benefit, stipend to SC/ST trainees for coaching guidance and vocational training, stipend to handicapped, Aam Aadmi Bima Yojana, national apprenticeship and skill development schemes, crop insurance schemes, interest subvention scheme, scholarship and fellowship schemes, various education programmes such as mid- day meal for children and Atal Pension Yojana.”It is hereby clarified that this extension shall only apply to those beneficiaries who are not assigned Aadhaar number or those who have not yet enrolled for Aadhaar. Such beneficiaries are required to enroll for Aadhaar by December 31, 2017 and provide their Aadhaar number or enrolment ID,” it said.A source said that there will be no denial of services in the interim period.

Some ID, if not Aadhaar, needed for subsidised foodgrains: Delhi HC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Delhi High Court today said that Delhi’ites seeking to avail subsidised foodgrains under the public distribution system (PDS) should have some sort of identification if they do not have Aadhaar cards.A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar said that distribution of foodgrains without any identity proof will lead to people coming to Delhi from all over the country which would strain the resources of the city.”Imagine the whole of India converging on the metropolis. Where will the housing, water and sanitation come from,” it asked an NGO which has sought disbursal of subsidised foodgrains to the beneficiaries under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) without Aadhaar cards. “Without any identification, everyone from all over will come here. Bring some ID. Even as per you, more (beneficiaries) have surfaced,” it said.The bench also refused to grant the NGO’s interim plea for a stay on the roll out of Aadhaar-linked point of sale (POS) machines at fair price shops for distribution of foodgrains and listed the matter for further hearing on November 7.The Delhi government, represented by advocate Anuj Aggarwal, submitted a status report before the bench highlighting the benefits of rolling out the POS machines.The status report said that POS machines would ensure authentification of beneficiaries, eradication of bogus ration cards, check on diversion and pilferage of subsidised foodgrains, enabling of digital payments as well as easier verification of stock at fair price shops.The NGO, Delhi Rozi Roti Adhikar Abhiyan, had moved the court claiming that some slum dwellers in south Delhi were facing difficulties in getting subsidised foodgrains under the PDS due to lack of Aadhaar cards.Under the NFSA which was rolled out across the country in November last year, five kgs of foodgrains per person is provided each month at Rs 1-3 per kg to over 80 crore people.The Centre had earlier told the court that Aadhaar was made mandatory to ensure that the poor get subsidised foodgrains under the PDS.Terming PDS as a “misused system”, it had said that through Aadhaar, the endeavour was to ensure that the real beneficiaries get foodgrains.Aadhaar is a 12-digit unique identification number issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) after collecting biometric data of the citizens.The PIL has sought quashing of the Centre’s February 8 notification making Aadhaar mandatory for availing benefits under the NFSA. The notification came into effect from February 8 in all states and UTs, except Assam, Meghalaya and Jammu and Kashmir. The petition has said the notification violates the basic principle of law enshrined in Articles 14 (equality) and 21 (right to life) of the Constitution.

Govt planning to link driving licence with Aadhaar: RS Prasad

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> In another move to make India digital, Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Friday asserted that the Government is planning to link the driving licence with the Aadhaar card. Addressing the gathering at the Digital Haryana Summit 2017, Ravi Shankar Prasad said that the Aadhaar is a digital, not a physical identity and a digital identity confirms the physical identity. “We are planning to link the Driving Licence with the Aadhaar. I have had a word with Nitin Gadkari regarding this,’ he said. He also said that the decision to link the PAN card with the Aadhaar was taken to stop money laundering.Promoting the concept of digital governance, Ravi Shankar Prasad said that the digital governance is ‘good governance’ and that it ensures fast delivery as well as the welfare of the poor people.’Digital governance is honest, transparent and efficient governance,’ Ravi Shankar Prasad said. ‘Digital India must lead to digital intrusion; it must lead to a digital society,’ he added, while appreciating the Indian IT industry.He further said that the technology must be made available at affordable costs for people.

Make Aadhaar mandatory to register NRI marriages to tackle marital issues: expert panel tells MEA

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Aadhaar should be made mandatory for the registration of NRI marriages in India to tackle desertion and other marital issues, an inter-ministerial committee has recommended to the Ministry of External Affairs.The proposal by the special committee on Indian passport holders getting married in India is aimed at protecting the rights of women who are deserted by their NRI husbands or become victims of domestic violence and dowry harassment abroad.”It has been proposed that Aadhaar be a must-have for registration of NRI marriages (in India),” said a source privy to the contents of the report submitted to the MEA on August 30.The Unique Identification Authority of India is working on a policy for the Aadhaar enrolment of NRIs, Overseas Citizens of India and Persons of Indian Origin. At present, all residents including Indian nationals and foreigners with valid visas can enrol for an Aadhaar number.The panel also recommended that India amend its extradition treaties with various countries to include domestic violence as a criterion for seeking the custody of an accused.An official in the ministry of Women and Child Development (WCD) said tracking an offender in NRI marriages was often difficult.”The main issue is that serving of notice is difficult because you don’t have the address,” he said.The report is only limited to NRIs and not anybody else of Indian origin living abroad, the source said.”We are only dealing with those who hold an Indian passport,” the source added.The committee also suggested that the National Commission for Women (NCW) be made the nodal authority for looking into disputes arising out of such marriages.According to an NCW report, about 1300 such cases were registered by its NRI cell between 2005 and 2012.The panel mooted that special teams consisting of officials of the MEA, Home Affairs and WCD be deputed in “10- 15 countries” from where such cases emanate.Apart from the UK, US, Canada and Australia, teams should also be posted to African and West Asian nations, it said.The expert panel on NRI marriages was constituted last year under the chairmanship of retired Justice Arvind Goel, former chairman of the NRI Commission of Punjab, and comprises officials of the ministries of WCD, Home Affairs, MEA and the department of Telecommunications.The NCW report commissioned in 2011, titled Laws Relating to NRI Marriages and their Impact on Women, lists the problems faced by women in such marriages.”It has been noticed that sometimes the particulars of employment, immigration status, surname, property, earning status, marital status and other material particulars are wrongly supplied purposely by the prospective groom to con a girl into marriage for ulterior motives,” it said.While hearing a batch of petitions challenging the Centre’s move to make Aadhaar mandatory, the Supreme Court last month unanimously declared that the right to privacy was a fundamental one.The judgement was limited to the issue of right to privacy and the question whether Aadhaar violates the right to privacy will be dealt with by a three-judge bench from November.

Legal and HR heads of Ryan International School arrested for attempting to ‘destroy evidence’

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> The Gurgaon police, which arrested two top functionaries of Ryan International School in connection with the brutal murder of a 7-year-old child in the school premises, said that there was an attempt to destroy evidence in the case.The police arrested Francis Thomas, legal head and Jeyus Thomas, HR Head of the Ryan International School group, who were produced in a Sohna court which remanded them to two days in police custody.Gurgaon Police Commissioner Sandeep Khirwar said that the Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the case believes that evidence in the case was tampered with.”The SIT said in the Sohna court that destruction of evidence was found to have been done. Attempt was made to wash away the blood stains from the spot where the child was found murdered. The blood on his water bottle and bag was also found rubbed. Some other pieces of evidence were also tampered with,” Khirwar said.We will add appropriate sections against the school management or other staff, whoever is found to be involved, at the time of submission of the charge sheet, Khirwar said.”A team was sent to Mumbai to the Ryan headquarters for questioning the top officials including the head and directors so that we can look at their roles and responsibility regarding the school in Gurgaon, he said.Asked about the post-mortem findings, he said that these details could not shared at the moment.”Some other security lapses also emerged. We have already taken action under the Juvenile Justice Act against the school and arrested their two top officers and are interrogating other staff members including suspended Principal Neerja Batra,” Khirwar added.More arrests will be carried out as per the evidence that emerges, he said. The police teams will again question the bus driver and school gardener, he added.Haryana Police Additional Directorate General of Police Law and Order, Mohammad Akil has also visited the scene of the crime.We will not spare any person found involved, irrespective of his or her position, he said.”We will add Prevention of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act and other sections on the basis of SIT report.As per our investigation and evidence before us, we have found Ashok Kumar, the school bus conductor is guilty in this murder,” Akil said.The police also added section 34 (common intention) of the IPC in the murder case against the two officers of school, officials said.The prosecution counsels demanded the addition of section 201 of the IPC (causing disappearance of evidence of offence, or giving false information to screen offender). The police told the court that the school authorities tampered with the evidence at the crime spot.Meanwhile, there were also allegations that the school management had not carried out a proper verification of the conductor and his Aadhaar card was obtained from his house in Ghamroj village hours after the crime to maintain records.Amir Chand, the father of accused alleged that his son was a soft target and hence the school was framing him.”Why did the school take his Aadhaar card six hours after the crime?” Chand asked.

Mohalla Clinics get L-G’s approval, but with a few riders

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Lieutenant-Governor (L-G) Anil Baijal on Monday gave a green signal to the establishment of Mohalla Clinics, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government’s pet project, but with a few riders.Baijal has approved the proposal with certain safeguards, to promote transparency and ensure delivery of quality healthcare services to Delhi residents. The decision has come after 45 AAP MLAs occupied the Raj Niwas conference hall, demanding to speed up the process of clearing files related to the Mohalla Clinics.”These safeguards are aimed at developing a robust healthcare delivery system, besides addressing complaints received regarding the functioning of clinics, so far. The L-G observed that selection of premises to set up these clinics should be through a transparent and objective mechanism in such a way that the existing healthcare facilities are utilised in an optimum manner and the facilities are accessible to all, especially the weaker sections, without any duplication of scarce public resources. In case of private premises, it has been noted that the selection of premises and fixation of rent should be through a transparent open process, as per prevalent PWD/CPWD norms,” the L-G said in a statement issued on Monday.Recently, the Delhi government’s vigilance department, in a probe, had found irregularities in the functioning of these clinics. A complaint sent to the L-G stated that doctors were treating 533 patients in just four hours a day. It also questioned the data of patients recorded by NGO Wish Foundation.To check incidents of data rigging, the L-G has advised that the administrative department must develop a sound mechanism to verify the number of patients claimed by a clinic. According to the officials, the Delhi government has been advised to develop an online system based on Aadhaar cards within six months.”The conditions laid down by the land-owning agencies concerned, for land use and construction of any temporary structure, must be strictly followed. The Health Department shall not transfer, assign, or otherwise part with the ownership or possession of the whole or any part of the said land in any manner. Further, wherever required, statutory permissions and no objection certificates must be obtained from the local bodies/department concerned,” the statement further stated.IRREGULARITIESThe Delhi government’s vigilance department, in a probe, had found irregularities in the functioning of these clinics.
A complaint sent to the L-G stated that doctors were treating 533 patients in just four hours a day. It also questioned the data of patients recorded by NGO Wish Foundation

Blue Whale drives 30-yr-old man from Gujarat to death

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A 30-year-old man from a village in Banaskantha district in Ahmedabad committed suicide on Saturday by jumping into the Sabarmati after he was allegedly pushed to the extreme step by the Blue Whale Challenge. This is Gujarat’s first case of Blue Whale-related suicide. However, police have denied that the death has anything to do with the game and that the man was suffering from blood cancer.Before ending his life, Ashok Maluna, a resident of Malan village in Palanpur taluka, posted a video on his Facebook account saying he was frustrated with his life and that he stole Rs 46,000 from his own house. Maluna then says where the cash is and it should be returned to his family.Before ending the video, Maluna says he is going to commit suicide as he has entered the final stage of the Blue Whale game. “I had downloaded the Blue Whale game and this is the last step, which is why I am committing suicide,” he is heard saying in the short video.He also says, “I am fed up with my life which is why I am making this video. Please convey this to my family members… I don’t know how to tell them how much I love them.”Maluna says he had even gone to Mumbai to commit suicide, but could not do so due to heavy rains there.According to Sabarmati Riverfront West police officers, Maluna had jumped into the Sabarmati river from Sardar bridge on Thursday. His body was recovered on Friday afternoon from the riverfront near Paldi.Police said their investigation revealed that Maluna was diagnosed with blood cancer some time back and was undergoing treatment at the Civil Hospital for the past six months.Inspector A J Bhagora said he may have been depressed because of the disease. “During the investigation, we came to know that Maluna was tired of his health condition. We believe his claim about the Blue Whale challenge was all made-up. The police have found no evidence suggesting he was part of the online challenge when he killed himself,” Bhagora said.Police reached Maluna’s family with help of his Aadhaar card and mobile phone which were in the bag he had left behind on the bridge.

No one should be left out of the ambit of food security: HC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Delhi high court on Friday said that it would not let anyone sleep without food and ensure that everyone gets ration. A bench of Acting Chief Justices said that no deserving and eligible person should be left out of the ambit of food security. The remarks were made after a report submitted by Zoheb Hossain, a court-appointed commissioner, highlighted the problems faced by slum dwellers in south Delhi, who were facing difficulties in getting subsidised foodgrains under the public distribution system (PDS) due to the lack of Aadhaar cards.The court asked the petitioner NGO and the concerned authorities to suggest a mechanism which does not have human intervention to create problems. “You tell us how to regulate the functioning of fair price shops. You tell us what problems they are facing. We will ensure that nobody sleeps hungry in Delhi,” the bench said.In his report, Hossain noted the instance of a nine-year-old autistic boy, Nitin, whose mother applied for a ration card with his birth certificate but was refused enlistment for not possessing Aadhaar.“The application was made on March 3, 2014, when Aadhaar was not mandatory. Nitin and his younger brother, Ayush, have been included in the ration card pursuant to the court’s intervention,” the report said, adding that those excluded from the food subsidies have suffered hardships and may be compensated by the Food Department of the State of NCT of Delhi, if the court deems fit.

JAM to bring all citizens under one financial, digital space: Arun Jaitley

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a similar way as the GST has created a unified economic market, the JAM (Jan Dhan, Aadhaar and Mobile) trinity will eventually bring all Indians into a common financial, economic and digital space. In a Facebook post on Sunday, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the JAM was a social revolution, where poor will have access to financial services. “Within reach of the country is what might be called the 1 billion-1 billion-1 billion vision. That is 1 billion unique Aadhaar numbers linked to 1 billion bank accounts and 1 billion mobile phones. Once that is done, all of India can become part of the financial and digital mainstream,” he said.Highlighting the benefits, the union minister said the poor will have access to financial services and be cushioned against life’s major shocks while government finances will be improved because of the reduced subsidy burden and weeding out of leakages from the system. Currently, the government makes a direct transfer of Rs 74,000 crore to the financial accounts of 35 crore beneficiaries annually, at more than Rs 6,000 crore per month. These transfers are made under various government anti- poverty and support schemes such as PAHAL, MNREGA, old age pensions and student scholarships, he said. Talking about seeding of Aadhaar with bank accounts, the Finance Minister said about 52.4 crore unique Aadhaar numbers are linked to 73.62 crore accounts in India. “As a result, the poor are able to make payments electronically. Every month, about 7 crore successful payments are made by the poor using their Aadhaar identification,” he said.Besides, he said, with the launch of BHIM app and the Unified Payments Interface (UPI), JAM has become fully operational. “A secure and seamless digital payments infrastructure has been created so that all Indians, especially the poor can become part of the digital mainstream,” he said.The Finance Minister also said the number of PMJDY accounts increased from 12.55 crore in January 2015, to 29.52 crores as of August 16, 2017, while the number of RuPay cards issued increased from 11.08 crore to 22.71 crores during the same period.

UIDAI refutes Wikileaks reports of Aadhaar data snoop

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The UIDAI on Sunday asserted that Aadhaar system has stringent security features to prevent any unauthorised capture or transmission of data, refuting reports that hinted at sensitive biometric data being allegedly accessed by certain foreign agencies.The statement by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) came after WikiLeaks hinted that CIA had allegedly accessed the Aadhaar database. Dismissing the allegations, UIDAI said Aadhaar biometric capture system has been “developed within our own country and it has adequate and robust security features to prevent any possibility of any such unauthorised capture and transmission of data regardless of any biometric device that may be used.” The UIDAI said that such “misinformation was being spread by certain “vested interests”.”Some vested interests are trying to spread misinformation that since ‘Cross Match’ is one of many devices which are being used in biometric devices by various registrars and agencies in Aadhaar ecosystem, the biometrics being captured for Aadhaar are allegedly unauthorisedly accessed by others,” the UIDAI statement said rejecting charges of data compromise. Outlining the stringent checks and balances in UIDAI system, it said that any biometric device before being used in Aadhaar system is “thoroughly tested” internally and externally extensively by Standardised Testing Quality Certification (STQC) and certified.”In addition, there are many other rigorous security features and processes within UIDAI through which it ensures that no biometric data of any individual is unauthorised accessed by anyone in any manner whatsoever,” the UIDAI said. The Aadhaar issuing body said that the biometric identifier had been issued to over 117 crore people, with around 4 crore authentication taking place every day. “Till date, there has not been a single case of leak of biometric data, theft of identity, or financial loss to any one on account of use of Aadhaar. The UIDAI will continue to take every possible measure to ensure that Aadhaar remains safe and secure,” it said.WikiLeaks in a tweet two days ago had said, “Have CIA spies already stolen #India’s national ID card database?” It has been claimed that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) was leveraging tools of US-based technology provider Cross Match (incidentally, an Aadhaar vendor) for snooping, and that sensitive data could have been compromised. “Some news are being circulated on the basis of wikileaks regarding some purported Express Lane project whereby it is alleged that the Express Lane system uses computer system consisting of a computer or laptop, windows XP operating system along with biometric software of Cross Match, a company manufacturing biometric sensors,” UIDAI said terming allegations of Aadhaar biometric data being compromised as “completely false and baseless”.

Right to Privacy: Would have admitted we lost case, says former AG Mukul Rohatgi

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>After Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad claimed that the Centre backed privacy as fundamental right, former Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi said he would have admitted that the government lost the case. “If I was there (as Attorney General), I would have said we have lost the case. As lawyers, we are used to winning and losing cases. Because the fact is, we haven’t won this case. The eight-judge bench has been overruled (an eight-judge bench had ruled in 1954 that the right to privacy cannot be a fundamental right) and the Aadhaar issue has been left unresolved. So where is the question of winning?,’’ Rohatgi told The Indian Express.Rohatgi stepped down from the position of AG in June and said he was surprised with the government’s reaction. He also said that the govt should not have diluted its stand before the Bench.“The government should not have diluted their stand in court because the inclusion or exclusion of fundamental rights is only the proviso of Parliament. Here, the judiciary is taking over the functions of Parliament and it is a very unsatisfactory resolution of the dispute,” he told the daily.A nine-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice JS Khehar delivered verdict on August 24 that said “the right to privacy is protected as an intrinsic part of the right to life and personal liberty under Article 21 and as a part of the freedoms guaranteed by Part III of the Constitution”.Rohatgi had previously argued against treating privacy as a fundamental right. “The fundamental rights are engrafted in the Constitution so they have to be physically put in a book called the Constitution,” Rohatgi argued as the then Attorney General. “The right belongs to the Parliament, to make the law, amend the law, repeal the law. The court has no power to engraft more fundamental rights in the Constitution.”The top-level law officer has widely believed that there are two spheres – judiciary and Parliament – and both cannot overlap each other.”There is no amendment in the Constitution by a court as you have two different spheres. The sphere of the judiciary and the sphere of the Parliament. Both the spheres cannot overlap,” he said.

Aadhaar security: WikiLeaks hints at CIA access to India’s national ID card database

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>WikiLeaks on Friday published reports that suggested the United States’ Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is using technology provider Cross Match Technologies to discreetly extract Aadhaar data.”The OTS (Office of Technical Services), a branch within the CIA, has a biometric collection system that is provided to liaison services around the world — with the expectation for sharing of the biometric takes collected on the systems. But this ‘voluntary sharing’ obviously does not work or is considered insufficient by the CIA, because ExpressLane is a covert information collection tool that is used by the CIA to secretly exfiltrate data collections from such systems provided to liaison services,” WikiLeaks said on its website.WikiLeaks published documents’ claimed that CIA used ExpressLane – a cyber tool devised by Cross match Technologies for online spying. Cross match Technologies is a US company that specialises in biometric software that also provides biometric solutions to the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), the statutory body for Aadhaar.”Have CIA spies already stolen #India’s national ID card database?,” tweeted WikiLeaks along with an article attached.In another tweet, they published an article that says “Aadhaar in the hand of spies”. However, the official sources in India have denied any such claims, say media reports. Earlier, defending its decision to make Aadhaar a necessary document for availing benefits of government schemes, the Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad informed the Supreme Court that the government has formed a high-level committee for Aadhaar data protection. However, the Supreme Court refused to pass any interim order against the Central government notification for making Aadhaar mandatory. The Supreme Court was hearing a petition that said making Aadhaar compulsory would violate the right to privacy of an individual. In the recent development, putting an end to all the debates whether privacy of an individual is a fundamental right, the apex court on August 24 pronounced that individual privacy is a fundamental right protected by the Constitution.

Recap of arguments during the case

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court’s decision to accord privacy as a fundamental right was not an easy one. The nine-judge bench acknowledged the efforts of the advocates on both sides who argued their case. DNA recaps a few key arguments made during the trial.The debate for privacy that was triggered by a batch of petitions challenging the constitutional validity of Aadhaar was heard by a rare nine-judge bench led by the Chief Justice of India JS Khehar.The privacy judgment delivered on Thursday will remain to be a touchstone in CJI Khehar’s career as he retires on Friday.Over an almost three-week period, a battery of lawyers representing various petitioners, the Centre and various states argued around the concept of privacy as a common law right protected by statutory rights, or whether it was fundamental to a human’s existence.Senior Advocates Gopal Subramanium, Soli Sorabjee, Shyam Divan, Anand Grover, Arvind Datar, Kapil Sibal, and Meenakshi Arora argued for the petitioners and sought the elevation of privacy as a fundamental right.Opposing them, Attorney General KK Venugopal, Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Tushar Mehta with senior advocates CA Sundaram and Rakesh Dwivedi, along with advocates like Gopal Shankarnarayan, and Arghya Sengupta argued that privacy was a common law right and had enough protection through statutory provisions.The crux of the Centre’s argument was that the right to life (under Article 21) superceded one’s right to privacy. “Aadhaar is beneficial to the poor. In the name of fundamental rights, one cant deprive a large section of the society and their right to life,” the top law officer had said.Privacy was not a fundamental and absolute right in this (Aadhaar) instance. The state can subject privacy to reasonable restrictions in order to preserve the right to life of the masses. An elite few cannot claim that their bodily integrity would be violated by a scheme which serves to bring home basic human rights and social justice to millions of poor households across the country, he had added.Interestingly, Sengupta — who closed the arguements on Wednesday is also part of the ten-member committee that will draft the data protection law recently constituted by the Centre. Sengupta, founder and research director of Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy also helped draft the Aadhaar bill. He argued that the existing fundamental right to liberty sufficiently covered privacy and hence no new jurisprudence was required.

Verdict rejection of BJP ideology: Rahul Gandhi

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>While the Opposition parties have hailed the Supreme Court verdict declaring privacy a fundamental right, rights activists have asked for balancing privacy with people’s right to know. Congress president Sonia Gandhi took the lead on Thursday morning, saying the verdict has heralded a new era for individual rights and human dignity. The party vice president Rahul Gandhi said it was a rejection of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s ideology of suppression through surveillance. ‘Welcome the SC verdict upholding right to privacy as an intrinsic part of individual’s liberty, freedom and dignity. The SC decision marks a major blow to fascist forces,’ he said on Twitter.Former Home Minister P. Chidambaram, who briefed press at the party headquarters believed the verdict would rank ‘among the most important judgments delivered by the Supreme Court since the advent of the Constitution of India’. “Privacy is at the core of personal liberty. In fact, privacy is an inalienable part of life itself. By virtue of the judgement, Article 21 has acquired new magnificence,” he told reporters. The former finance minister criticised the government’s approach in its interpretation of Aadhaar under Article 21 — on the protection of life and personal liberty — and alleged its stand was ‘inconsistent’. Chidambaram said there was nothing wrong in distributing Aadhaar cards or in asking citizens to apply for such cards.Congress’s media department in-charge Randeep Surjewala described the verdict as the ‘dawn of a new freedom’ and a ‘decisive defeat’ for the BJP government. “The Court rejects Modi government’s attempt to whittle down the right to privacy as a fundamental right,” he said. Former Law Minister Ashwani Kumar said the Court had vindicated ‘constitutional conscience’ and validated yet again its role as ‘the guardian of our constitutional rights’.Senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal stressed that the right to privacy is seeded in several articles of Part III of the Constitution and cautioned the National Democratic Alliance government at the Centre that it should not in anyway compromise with the privacy of citizens in implementation of the Aadhaar scheme.”Apart from this, data relating to the individual also needs protection and it is the legitimate expectation of individuals parting with their data to secure that protection. The state needs to frame data protection law to ensure legitimate expectation of individuals,” he said.Welcoming the judgment, the Communist Party of India-Marxist expressed hope that it would protect the misuse of private data in a world ‘dominated by corporates’. ‘The Politburo welcomes the Supreme Court verdict…this landmark judgment should pave the way to protect, in this world of technology advance dominated by corporates, misuse of private data and infringing upon the privacy of individuals,’ the Left party said in a statement.RTI activist at the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative Venkatesh Nayak, however, asked for balancing the privacy with transparency. “Much like the right to privacy, people’s right to know is also an inseparable element of the rights to life and liberty and freedom of speech and expression guaranteed under the Constitution,” he said. “While celebrating the restoration of clarity vis-à-vis the right to privacy, it is important to ensure that information that is required to be made public under the RTI Act is not restricted by using the Constitution Bench’s findings,” he added.

Right to Privacy is fundamental, but not absolute; judgment interpreted to respond to changing times: SC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Thursday declared right to privacy a fundamental right, a far-reaching verdict that could impact a range of life choices of Indians, including food habits and sexual orientation.In a session that lasted barely five minutes, Chief Justice J S Khehar read out the unanimous operative part of the verdict of the nine-judge bench: “the right to privacy is protected as an intrinsic part of the right to life and personal liberty under Article 21 and as a part of the freedoms guaranteed by Part III of the Constitution.”But the huge ramifications of the verdict, which one judge said “governs the lives of 125 crore citizens of this country”, were woven into the 547-page judgement.
ALSO READ Right to Privacy: India’s constitutional culture is based on the protection of human rights, says SCThe judgement “must be interpreted to respond to the changing needs of society at different points in time,” said Justice Rohinton Nariman.The top court also ruled that like other fundamental rights, the right to privacy was not absolute and any encroachment will have to withstand the touchstone of permissible restrictions.
ALSO READ Right to privacy: Amit Shah slams Congress for showing ‘false show of jubilation and vindication’ over SC verdict The case stemmed from a bunch of petitions challenging the Aadhaar scheme, which contended that the data obtained to issue the identity card was an infringement of privacy.The court did not directly address the Aadhaar issue, which will continue to be dealt with by a separate bench that has been hearing arguments since 2015.
ALSO READ Right to privacy: LGBT community cheers after SC adds a touch of rainbow in judgmentThe bench overruled the contrary apex court verdicts delivered in 1950 and 1962 in the M P Sharma and the Kharak Singh cases holding that right to privacy was not part of the Constitution.The top court rejected the NDA government’s vehement contention that there was no general or fundamental right to privacy under the Constitution.The lead judgement, penned by Justice D Y Chandrachud for himself, the CJI, Justices R K Agrawal and S A Nazeer, however, asked the government to examine and put in place a “robust regime” for data protection in the modern era.The other members of the bench were Justices J Chelameswar, S A Bobde, Abhay Manohar Sapre and Sanjay Kishan Kaul.The top court gave a ray of hope to the government whose Aadhaar scheme is under intense scrutiny over privacy infringements, said, “We commend to the Union Government the need to examine and put into place a robust regime for data protection.The judgement said that privacy included at its core the preservation of personal intimacies, the sanctity of family life, marriage, procreation, the home and sexual orientation.”Privacy also connotes a right to be left alone. Privacy safeguards individual autonomy and recognises the ability of the individual to control vital aspects of his or her life,” the judgement said.It said personal choices governing a way of life are intrinsic to privacy.”Privacy protects heterogenity and recognises the plurality and diversity of our culture. While the legitimate expectation of privacy may vary from the intimate zone to the private zone and from the private to the public arenas, it is important to underscore that privacy is not lost or surrendered merely because the individual is in a public place,” it said.The judgement was welcomed by leading legal experts, including Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, who is himself a lawyer. Noted jurist Soli Sorabjee said “no fundamental right is absolute. It is always subject to reasonable restrictions”.Senior advocate Indira Jaising said “privacy is fundamental. It certainly has an impact on the day-to-day life. This verdict prevents any kind of snooping.”Kapil Sibal, who had appeared for non-BJP ruled states in this case, observed that like individual freedom, “individual house, marriages, sexual orientation, right to space, right to move freely, right to eat what an individual likes, right to be left alone are protected both within the home and at public places to the extent necessary.”Both sides of the political divide hailed the verdict and claimed victory.The government side said it has buttressed what it had said in Parliament while moving the Aadhaar Bill, referring to “reasonable restrictions” on fundamental rights.On the other hand, Congress President Sonia Gandhi said the verdict strikes at “unbridled encroachment and surveillance by the state and its agencies” on individual privacy.Terming privacy as a “constitutionally protected right”, the bench said it emerged primarily from “the guarantee of life and personal liberty in Article 21 of the Constitution.Justice Chandrachud dispelled the notion that the judiciary was amending the Constitution, saying it was merely recognising the existence of the constitutional right.Justice Kaul observed where there are wide, varied, social and cultural norms, “privacy is one of the most important rights to be protected both against State and non- State actors.”

Ministers go into a huddle after SC ruling on privacy

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Soon after the Supreme Court today unanimously ruled that individual privacy is a fundamental right, top ministers went into a huddle to discuss its implications, particularly on the use of the world’s largest biometric ID card programme, Aadhaar. Law and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and Principal Secretary to Prime Minister Nripendra Misra went to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to discuss the possible ramifications. While none of them offered any comments, officials said the government will give a structured response. Immediately after the 9-member bench of the Supreme Court gave its ruling, Ajay Bhushan Pandey, CEO, UIDAI, the agency that issues biometric Aadhaar cards, called on Prasad, who then went to meet Jaitley. Pandey, too, refused to comment on the ruling. A senior government official, asking not to be named, said the verdict “is in line with the government’s view”. He did not elaborate.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Right to Privacy: India’s constitutional culture is based on the protection of human rights, says SC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Three judges of the Supreme Court in separate judgements today said the issue of right to privacy goes to the very heart of liberty and freedom which have huge repercussions for the democratic republic called ‘Bharat’ whose constitutional culture is based on protection of human rights.While Justice R F Nariman said the importance of this matter is such that whichever way it is decided, it will have huge repercussions for the democratic republic that we call ‘Bharat’, Justice S A Bobde said this reference has been made to them to answer questions that would go to the very heart of the liberty and freedom protected by the Constitution.Justice D Y Chandrachud said the issue reaches out to the foundation of a constitutional culture based on protection of human rights and enables the Supreme Court to revisit the basic principles on which the Constitution has been founded and their consequences for a way of life it seeks to protect.
ALSO READ Right to privacy: Amit Shah slams Congress for showing ‘false show of jubilation and vindication’ over SC verdict Justice Nariman, in his separate verdict, said, “Our judgments expressly recognize that the Constitution governs the lives of 125 crore citizens of this country and must be interpreted to respond to the changing needs of society at different points in time.”Justice Bobde also said the issue has arisen in the context of a constitutional challenge to the Aadhaar project, which aims to build a database of personal identity and biometric information covering every Indian that is the world’s largest endeavour of its kind.
ALSO READ Right to privacy: LGBT community cheers after SC adds a touch of rainbow in judgmentJustice Nariman held it was clear that the right to privacy is an inalienable human right which inheres in every person by virtue of the fact that he or she is a human being.”This reference is answered by stating that the inalienable fundamental right to privacy resides in Article 21 and other fundamental freedoms contained in Part III of the Constitution,” he said.The judge, however, said right to privacy is not an absolute right and is subject to reasonable regulations made by the state to protect legitimate state or public interest.He said when it comes to restrictions on this right, the drill of various articles to which the right relates must be scrupulously followed.”In the ultimate analysis, the balancing act that is to be carried out between individual, societal and State interests must be left to the training and expertise of the judicial mind,” he said.The judge rejected the arguments of the Centre and Maharashtra government that the right to privacy is so vague and amorphous a concept that it cannot be held to be a fundamental right.He said that mere absence of a definition which would encompass the many contours of the right to privacy need not deter the court from recognizing privacy interests when it sees them.The judge said the concept has travelled far from mere right to be let alone to recognition of a large number of privacy interests.He said it now extended to protecting an individual’s interests in making vital personal choices such as the right to abort a foetus, rights of same sex couples- including the right to marry, rights as to procreation, contraception, general family relationships, child rearing, education, data protection, etc.The court said it is too late now to assume that a fundamental right must be traceable to express language in Part III of the Constitution.Describing right to privacy as a fundamental right in Indian context, the judge said it would cover at least three aspects including “privacy that involves the person when there is some invasion by the State of a person’s rights relatable to his physical body, such as the right to move freely.”The other two aspects are, “Informational privacy which does not deal with a person’s body but deals with a person’s mind, and therefore recognises that an individual may have control over the dissemination of material that is personal to him. Unauthorised use of such information may, therefore lead to infringement of this right.”The privacy of choice, which protects an individual’s autonomy over fundamental personal choices,” he said.Justice Nariman rejected the Centre’s argument that in a developing country where millions of people are denied the basic necessities of life and do not even have shelter, food, clothing or jobs, no claim to a right to privacy as a fundamental right could be made.”A large number of poor people that Attorney General K K Venugopal talks about are persons who in today’s completely different and changed world have cell phones, and would come forward to press the fundamental right of privacy, both against the government and private individuals.”We see no antipathy whatsoever between the rich and the poor in this context,” he said.The judge further said it seems that this argument was made through the prism of the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016, by which the Aadhaar card is the means to see that various beneficial schemes of the government filter down to persons for whom such schemes are intended.”This 9-judge bench has not been constituted to look into the constitutional validity of the Aadhaar Act, but it has been constituted to consider a much larger question, namely, that the right of privacy would be found, inter alia, in article 21 in both ‘life’ and ‘personal liberty’ by rich and poor alike primarily against state action. This argument again does not impress us and is rejected,” he said.

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