1. Congress likens NDA Government’s implementation of Aadhaar with seeding to sterilisation during Emergency

Congress likens NDA Government’s implementation of Aadhaar with seeding to sterilisation during Emergency

During the discussion in Rajya Sabha on Monday, roles were seemed to reverse on Aadhar as those who were progenitors of Aadhaar, turned into its critics and those had criticised the concept earlier defending it during a debate

By: | New Delhi | Published: April 11, 2017 10:33 AM
Congress MP Jairam Ramesh called the concept of Aadhar as ‘instrument of exclusion’. (Reuters)

During the discussion in Rajya Sabha on Monday, roles were seemed to reverse on Aadhar as those who were progenitors of Aadhaar, turned into its critics and those had criticised the concept earlier defending it during a debate, a report by ‘The Indian Express’has said.

Congress MP Jairam Ramesh called the concept of Aadhar as “instrument of exclusion”. He also drew parallels with the NDA government’s implementation of the concept to sterilisation programme during emergency.

“What sterilisation was to the Emergency, Aadhaar seeding is becoming to your government. It is a target-oriented approach, 100 per cent seeding in every programme,” Ramesh said while giving examples from PDS and old-age pension to show how people were being denied their entitlements for lack of Aadhar. “I know you will say that it is not mandatory. But, it is compulsorily mandatorily voluntary,” he said during the debate in the Upper House of the Parliament.

Even as MPs from Opposition parties quoted then Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi’s statement against Aadhar in which during an election rally in 2014, he had promised to scrap it should he become the prime minister, Union IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad tried to dismiss their criticism.

However, the minister did give credit to the Congress for having envisaged Aadhar.

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“Some of my friends in the Congress are repeatedly trying to paint Aadhaar as the biggest curse to have happened for the country. Sorry, don’t do that. You have created it and we compliment you,” Prasad was quoted as saying by the paper.

Refuting the Opposition allegations that the ongoing mode of implementation of the scheme violates the orders of the Supreme Court, he assured the Upper House of not only the safety of Aadhaar data but also that no poor person would be deprived of their right of not having an Aadhaar. The minister further said that around 32,000 private companies have been blacklisted in the interest of data protection.

BJP MP Vinay Sahasrabuddhe gave credit to former deputy PM L K Advani for conceptualising the scheme. Ramesh told him what Advani had envisaged was a proof of citizenship and not that of identification.

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