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JPC Report on Personal Data Protection Bill submitted to Lok Sabha speaker: Meenakshi Lekhi

Lekhi also commented on the Pegasus spyware controversy that has caused an uproar in Parliament as the spyware was reportedly used to perpetrate surveillance on Indian journalists, activists, and politicians. The Parliamentary Joint Committee on Personal Data Protection Bill has submitted its report to the Speaker of the Lok Sabha, chairperson of the committee Meenakshi Lekhi said while accusing Congress of disrupting Parliamentary proceedings over the Pegasus spyware attack controversy. This clears the way for the introduction of the Personal Data Protection Bill in Parliament. "There is the Joint Committee on Personal Data, and it was a task assigned to me by the Speaker. All the members of Opposition worked in a transparent manner (in the committee). The report was ready but various things such as coronavirus, elections, cabinet reshuffle led to a delay in its adoption. Now, it has been submitted to the Speaker," Lekhi, an MP from New Delhi said while addressing a Bharatiya Janata Party press conference on Thursday. She added that the Speaker has to appoint someone to oversee "its adoption". Why it matters: Since the Puttaswamy judgement in 2017 at the Supreme Court of India, the government has been under an obligation to pass a legislation to protect Indians’ personal data. Steps like a data protection regulator, localisation requirements for data, and other aspects of the bill have been closely watched by the industry for years. Even as uncertainty looms over the current contours of the bill, data breaches continue to be regularly reported, with companies…

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Among other subjects, I cover the increasing usage of emerging technologies, especially for surveillance in India

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