New Delhi, November 27
Minister of State for Electronics and IT Rajeev Chandrasekhar today said the government would not be able to violate the privacy of citizens under the proposed data protection law as it would get access to personal data only in exceptional circumstances like national security, pandemic and natural disasters.
Speaking during an online discussion, he elaborated how the National Data Governance Framework Policy had the provision for handling data.
While responding to questions around privacy on Twitter Live, the minister re-phrased the question of a participant to clarify the stand of the government and provisions in the draft Digital Personal Data Protection Bill, 2022.
“Let’s say the government wants to essentially violate the privacy of citizens with this law. Is it possible? The answer is no. The Bill lays out in very clear terms what are the exceptional circumstances under which the government can have access to the personal data of Indian citizens.... national security, pandemic, healthcare, natural disaster.“These are exceptions. Just like freedom of speech is not absolute and is subject to reasonable restriction, so is the right to data protection,” Chandrasekhar said.
The draft Bill also bars individuals from sharing unverifiable and wrong information. Chandrasekhar said the proposed Data Protection Board, which would adjudicate matters related to data protection, would be independent and won’t have any government officer on the board.
Proposed data law
- The proposed data protection law exempts certain entities notified as data fiduciaries from various compliances
- The provisions from which government-notified entities will be exempted deal with informing an individual about the purpose for data collection
- The draft Bill also bars individuals from sharing unverifiable and wrong information
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