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India against aadhar - Draft your MP

aadhar is control system of government

Inadequate laws, insecure network infrastructure, errors in authentication. This is not what your government wants you to acknowledge about the much-coveted project of Nandan Nilekani. A 12 digit number issued by Unique identification authority of India (UIDAI) is what government desperately needs to enforce order into the system that is depilated at the expense of multiple fake accounts. The question is are they actually able to achieve that with Aadhar or is it just another farce at play.

In an attempt to put up a face of robust and state of the art digital system for disposal of services that ensures cost-savings, denying services to the citizens who are not enrolled in an evasive set up of aadhar is one way to compromising individuals rights. Cancelling eligible beneficiaries and calling is savings is outrageous. Bursting this bubble of a greater good by putting the civil liberties at risk is highly derisive. Aadhar fall shorts on multiple fronts of privacy and security. data can be stolen and misused in a multitude of ways and a victim whose identity gets compromised can't file a complaint against the UIDAI with a looming threat of mass surveillance.

Rhe significant amount of powers that lies with UIDAI is terrifying. It holds the power to wipe the details of aadhar card holder which ultimately means depriving the citizens of any services. Already, we are seeing huge numbers of people facing problems in biometric authentication. The government should take these points into consideration before rolling out One ID for everything could very well mean a strong government for a weak nation. We definitely don't want it for us.

unconstitutional and dangerous to democracy aadhar is bad for India.

How do I act against aadhar?

Taking forward the voice of citizens, we at Not just an opinion asked our law friends to help us prepare a disposition that outlines the concerns of citizens regarding the violations of the orders of Apex court by the government and how it can distress the democratic set up of India by it's ever expanding list of services. It's time to draft your member parliaments to work. Draft your MP and please inform your friends to do the same so the campaign of #IndiaAgainstAadhar can gain further momentum.

1) Go to nocorruption.in

2) Select your state (Example- Delhi, Mumbai)

3) Select your constituency

4) Click on the profile of your Member Parliament.

5) Find the email address and forward this your representative. Make yourself heard. Copy paste the original draft and edit the document with your name in the end. Participating in democracy isn't bad after all.

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Dear Sir/Madam,

Subject: Mandatory Use of UID-Aadhaar in Violation of Orders of the Supreme Court and Lacunae in Aadhaar (Enrolment and Update) Regulations, 2016. 

We write to about the Aadhaar (Enrolment and Update) Regulations, 2016 [hereinafter, Aadhaar Regulations] that have currently been laid before each House of Parliament in pursuance of Section 55 of the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016 (hereinafter the Aadhaar Act), and seek to draw your attention to the lack of substantive and procedural safeguards against exclusion of citizens through the use of Aadhaar.

At the outset, we express our profound sense of alarm at the manner in which Aadhaar has been made
mandatory, in clear disregard of Orders of the Supreme Court, for access to various entitlements,
subsidies, services, legal compliance, etc.

We are constrained to point out that the Supreme Court has repeatedly emphasised that the Aadhaar number “is purely voluntary and it cannot be made mandatory till the matter is finally decided by the Court one way or the other“. It must also be noted that the Supreme Court has, through its order dated 14-09-2016, persisted with the prohibition on the mandatory use of Aadhaar even after the passage of the Aadhaar Act. As such, an insistence of mandatory submission of Aadhaar Number for an ever-expanding list of services and activities constitutes an unconscionable breach of the rule of law as well as contempt of the Supreme Court of India.

Even as such mandatory use of Aadhaar constitutes a violation of Supreme Court order, it also reinforces
the need for a robust, accessible, and accountable procedural mechanism for preventing misuse of Aadhaar number and protecting citizens from denial of services due to linkage with Aadhaar. However, the procedures envisaged by the Aadhaar Regulations fail to conform to the elementary principle of fairness, access and natural justices that have been recognised as an integral part of Art. 14 of the Constitution.

We draw your attention to the following aspects in particular: Deactivation without pre-decisional hearing
Regulations 29 to 32 of the Aadhaar Regulations provide for deactivation of Aadhaar number. In view of the linkage between Aadhaar number and basic services, including basic services recognised as part of the Right to Life under Article 21 of the Constitution, strict procedures with rigorous safeguard constitute an imperative. Yet, Regulation 29 fails to provide for a pre-decisional hearing to the number-holder as a mandatory requirement. The Regulation uses the phrase “deactivation may require field inquiry”, suggesting that UIDAI has the discretion to dispense with an inquiry.

Further, clause (2) of the Regulation suggests that UIDAI may ask another agency to carry out the inquiry and submit a report. The regulation, however, makes no mention of the selection process of this agency, the qualifications of the persons carrying out such inquiry or the procedure the agency must follow.

Another cause of concern is that clause (3) of Regulation also fails to provide any guidance on the officers within the UIDAI that would be authorised to carry out such deactivation or what procedure they would follow prior to deactivating the Aadhaar number.

Inadequacy of Grievance Redressal

Regulation 30 of the Aadhaar Regulations require an aggrieved number-holder to pursue a complaint through the “grievance redressal mechanism” set up under Regulation 32. Regulation 32 states that the UIDAI “shall set up a contact centre to act as a central point of contact for resolution of queries and grievances of residents, accessible a to residents through a toll-free number(s) and/ or e-mail.” However, the Regulations contain no indication about the powers of the contact centre or the procedures it shall follow. In view of the critical impact of any deactivation of Aadhaar number and consequent denial of services, grievance redressal mechanism must be prompt, effective and accessible.

But in the absence of both substantive and procedural norms, the mechanism envisaged under Regulation 32 is in danger of being nothing more than a charade. Further, the mechanism also fails the principle of access given its reliance on phones and emails. Such a mechanism would serve to exclude those without phones or internets who even at this moment, constitute a sizable section of our citizenry. Admittedly, clause (3) of Regulation 32 allows residents to “raise grievances by visiting the regional offices of the Authority or through any other officers or channels as may be specified by the Authority.” But with regional offices currently existing in mere 8 states, this option may also prove to be an illusory rope.

Levying and collecting Fees

The Aadhar (Enrolment and Update) (First Amendment) Regulations 2017 have authorised Registrars, Enrolling Agencies and other Service Providers to collect a fee from the residents for the services provided by them. Imposition of fees would constitute a dual burden on citizens and residents. Not only are people being compelled to sign up for Aadhaar, they shall also be charged a fee for such enrolment. Indeed, it seems a cruel joke being played at the cost of people of India.

In view of these lacunae, we believe that Aadhaar Regulations fail to act as a strong bulwark against the exclusion of people due to the linkage of Aadhaar and other services. Therefore, we write to you and call upon you to exercise your responsibility as Members of Parliament and request you to endeavour to modify or annul the Aadhaar Regulations under Section 55 of the Aadhaar Act before the Regulations become final.

Thanking you
(Enter your name)
Yours sincerely,

Saurabh Bhatt is a Law Teacher, works on Labour Law and Law & Impoverishment. He can be found at saurbhatt@outlook.com for appreciation and support.

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