The Kerala government has formed a new three-member committee to study a report prepared by a previous committee on the issues related to engaging data analytics firm Sprinklr for COVID-19 containment exercises, the government said in an order last week. However, the report prepared by the previous committee is yet to be made public. Researcher Arun PS first tweeted about the latest government order. US-based Sprinklr, founded by a Malayali expatriate, was at the heart of a privacy-related furore when opposition leaders in Kerala questioned the basis of the government’s deal with the company. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan was accused of sharing personal medical details of people placed under COVID-19 surveillance with Sprinklr. What happened to the previous committee's report? Following the controversy, the state government had set up a committee, which included former civil aviation secretary M Madhavan Nambiar, and former cybersecurity coordinator, Gulshan Rai, to study the deal with Sprinklr. In October, the committee presented its report, concluding that they found some procedural irregularities in selecting Sprinklr, and suggested measures to strengthen the state’s Information Technology department’s understanding, selection and implementation of data analytic platforms in the future, according to the government order issued last week. However, a lot is unknown about what Nambiar and Rai’s report actually found, since the state government is yet to make the report public. Broadly, the committee was looking into whether citizens’ privacy was protected properly, and adequate processes were followed while signing the deal with Sprinklr, among other things. Instead, the government is…
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