A Briefing Document on the National Identification Authority of India Bill, 2010: Questions of Constitutionality & Legislative Options Open to Parliament

80 Pages Posted: 13 Feb 2011

See all articles by Prashant Reddy

Prashant Reddy

Independent

Arghya Sengupta

University of Oxford

Sanhita Ambast

Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy

Sumathi Chandrashekaran

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Subramanian Natarajan

Clifford Chance LLP

Varun Hallikeri

The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy

Krishnaprasad K.V.

affiliation not provided to SSRN

N. Sai Vinod

Independent

Date Written: January 26, 2011

Abstract

The National Identification Authority of India Bill, 2010 was laid before Parliament on the 8th of November, 2010 by the Prime Minister of India. The Bill seeks to create a regulatory structure to implement the ambitious ‘Unique Identity’ (UID) scheme under which the Central Government will issue 12 digits unique identity numbers (“aadhar numbers”) to all residents of India. The basis of the unique identity will be biometric markers such as iris scans and fingerprints. The UID is to then be used as a tool to increase efficiency in the delivery of government subsidies and welfare programs. For its part the Bill seeks to create the National Identification Authority (NIA) and vest in it the powers to regulate the implementation and administration of the UID project. While the Bill is a welcome step in creating a regulatory framework for the use of biometric and other personal information, it is lacking in several respects. This report aims at not only examining the legality and Constitutionality of certain provisions in the Bill but also recommending to Parliament certain changes to cure those provisions of their Constitutional defects.

Keywords: privacy, law, Constitution of India, delegation of powers, NIA, National Identification Authority, UID

JEL Classification: K1, K2, K3, K4

Suggested Citation

Reddy, Prashant and Sengupta, Arghya and Ambast, Sanhita and Chandrashekaran, Sumathi and Natarajan, Subramanian and Hallikeri, Varun and K.V., Krishnaprasad and Sai Vinod, N., A Briefing Document on the National Identification Authority of India Bill, 2010: Questions of Constitutionality & Legislative Options Open to Parliament (January 26, 2011). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1759719 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1759719

Prashant Reddy (Contact Author)

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

Arghya Sengupta

University of Oxford ( email )

Balliol College
Broad Street
Oxford, Oxfordshire OX13BJ
United Kingdom

Sanhita Ambast

Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy ( email )

Medford, MA 02155

Sumathi Chandrashekaran

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Subramanian Natarajan

Clifford Chance LLP ( email )

London

Varun Hallikeri

The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy ( email )

160 Packard Avenue
Medford
MA 02155
United States

Krishnaprasad K.V.

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

N. Sai Vinod

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

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