The government is not considering to order private companies to delete the driving license and vehicle registration databases that they had purchased from the Road Transport Ministry, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said in Parliament. This, despite the government scrapping the Bulk Data Sharing policy—which allowed it to sell these databases to private companies—last year, over privacy concerns. Before the policy was scrapped, these databases were sold to 108 private entities, including Mercedes, ICICI Lombard and Bajaj Allianz, and in the process, the government pocketed more than Rs 111 crore —Rs 1,11,38,79,757 to be precise. When the government had decided to scrap the policy, we had pointed out that it should also ensure that data purchased by companies prior to that should not be misused, and the fact that the government isn't even considering to order these companies to delete the purchased data seems problematic. “There is a shift in the policy of this Ministry to publish reports specific to industry or stakeholders requirements, and further that there are issues in sharing of the personal information, it was unanimously decided that the ‘Bulk Data Sharing Policy & procedure’ should be scrapped,” the Road Transport Ministry had decided during a meeting with NIC and Home Ministry officials before it scrapped the data sharing policy. Instead, it decided to share reports generated on analysis of the data present with it, and on the basis of the Personal Data Protection Bill, 2019. In September 2019, MediaNama had reported that the government had pocketed Rs 68 crore…
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