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India’s data protection law consultation: stakeholder discussions in Delhi, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Mumbai

The Government of India Experts committee which is going to make recommendations related to a data protection law in India will begin hosting stakeholders consultations meetings in Delhi, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Mumbai, over a two week period.

Apply for the consultation at MyGov, for which you’ll first have to register for MyGov. Application for each discussion is separate, here.

The schedule is as follows:

  1. Delhi: 5th January 2018 (this Friday), from 10:30am to 4.30 PM at “The Auditorium, Civil Services Officers Institute (CSOI), Vinay Marg, Chanakyapuri”.
  2. Hyderabad: 12th January 2018 (next Friday), from 10:30am to 4.30 PM at “The Auditorium, Dr. MCR HRD Institute, Road No. 25, Jubilee Hills”.
  3. Bengaluru: 13th January 2018 (next Saturday), from 10:30am to 4.30 PM at “The Auditorium, Indian Institute of Science, CV Raman Road”
  4. Mumbai: 23rd January 2018 (next to next Tuesday), from 10:30am to 4.30 PM. The venue remains undecided.

It’s a little odd that these stakeholders consultations are taking place before the final deadline for the stakeholders comments (which is 31st January 2017, but remember that the deadline was extended last month, by a month. Perhaps the consultation plans were already in place and the government didn’t want to shift it. In any case, can’t help but feel that this process is far too rushed at the moment.

The Agenda

The Committee would especially appreciate inputs from stakeholders on the following issues:

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  • How can notice and choice be incorporated in a data protection law to operationalize consent? How can children’s personal data be effectively protected?
  • How should “data localisation” and “cross border transfer of data” be dealt with under a data protection law?
  • What should be the nature and scope of the possible exemptions under a data protection law in the Indian context?
  • What are the different types of individual rights, their nature and scope which can be incorporated in a data protection law?
  • What are the different types of individual rights, their nature and scope which can be incorporated in a data protection law?
  • To what extent should data controllers be held accountable under a data protection legal regime?
  • What will be the impact of a data protection law on allied laws, particularly, the Information Technology Act, 2000, Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016, and Right to Information Act, 2005?

According to the note on the site,

  • The primary object of the consultation is to provide stakeholders with an opportunity to present their views on issues which they wish to raise with the Committee directly. These could include issues that have not been specifically addressed in the White Paper, or any issue on which the stakeholder is uniquely placed to apprise the Committee of any relevant facts or material.
  • The Committee may consider prescribing time limits on submissions to ensure fairness and a chance for maximum participation.

Note: MediaNama had held discussions on data protection and privacy earlier this year. Details of our notes here. Videos here.

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