Rajya Sabha

August 6, 2018

Derek O’Brien speaks on UIDAI and Data safety

Derek O’Brien speaks on UIDAI and Data safety


Sir, the UIDAI is getting involved in controversy almost once every week. Few days ago on millions of Android phones in India, the UIDAI helpline popped up causing a big controversy Sir.

Sir, there are two issues with this UIDAI; one is the privacy issue which incidents like these bring to the fore. The other of course, is the deprivation issue, where the marginalised, the poor, the women, senior citizens, all of them who don’t get benefits. On this privacy issue Sir, I want to thank you first, you have now allowed MPs like us to submit our Zero Hour motions via email but then again I am getting scared because if you submit you are again exposing your personal details.

Sir, we need to be very careful. Last week was also important because a private citizen who happened to be an MLA and a Trinamool MLA , Mahua Moitra; the Government was planning to bring the Social Media Communication Hub and appoint a Social Media agency which basically is like a ‘big brother is watching you’. We are very happy that a few days ago that got thrown out so bade bhai ki nigaah, Supreme Court threw it out Sir, bade bhai ki nigaah aapke upar hai, at least we all have to be very careful about this Sir. It is not only a privacy issue as I said; it is also an issue about the deprived.

Sir, one other quick point on this. Now Google has come and said something. Whenever we are giving out our data we are getting alerts. I don’t know my wife lives in America, she gets mails from the Prime Minister. How they got the ID we don’t know.

Sir, the last point, I want to bring it up today to link it to UIDAI so we later don’t have a problem, is the very large IRCTC Railway database, that is about 1 crore. Every time now someone buys a railway ticket, he or she is exposing their data to; there are two issues here, one is please guard our data so ‘Big Brother’ is not watching you and two, do not make the Aadhaar compulsory for example to get a farmer loan also you have to produce your Aadhaar.

Thank You Sir.