Citizen & The Number – Usha Ramanathan

By May 26, 2017videos page

The Talk


One solution to the many problems of India: leakage, corruption, fakes, duplicates, ghosts, inefficiency, exclusion, tax evasion, black money, crime,  money laundering, terror, illegal migration (hmmm, may be not that, but never mind), unemployment, hunger, credit, subsidy reduction or removal, bank accounts as financial inclusion, cashless transactions. And identification. (Not identity.)

Sadly, the solution seems loaded with problems. Coercion, illegality, digital footprints and personal data as the new property, private enterprise with personal data, function creep, biometric failures, national security risks, leaks, and the Attorney General for India asserting that people of this country do not have a right to privacy, and asking what makes us think we have absolute rights over our bodies.


Usha Ramanathan, Dr

Usha Ramanathan works on the jurisprudence of law and poverty.  She has a PhD in law from Delhi University.

She has been investigating the UID/Aadhar project since November 2009, and has written extensively on it. She is the foremost campaigner against Aadhar.

She was a member of

  • Expert Group on Privacy set up in the Planning Commission of India which gave in its report in October 2012.
  • Committee set up in the Department of Biotechnology (2013-14) to review the Draft Human DNA Profiling Bill 2012.
  • Committee set up by the Prime Minister’s Office (2013-14) to study the socio-economic status of tribal communities which gave its report to the government in 2014.
  • A series of committees working to revise the vagrancy law.

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