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Govt proposes linking birth and death data to Aadhaar, but critics fear an NRC revival

The proposal for a unified database at the national level has been met with stiff opposition.

We missed this earlier: The central government wants to create a national database for registered births and deaths, a proposed amendment to the Registration of Births and Deaths Act 1969 indicates. The database would be used to update multiple records, including the National Population Register (NPR) and the Aadhaar database.

Registered births and deaths are currently only recorded by state governments. Critics fear that this amendment is a step towards the creation of the highly controversial National Register of Citizens (NRC). The Ministry for Home Affairs is accepting comments on the proposed amendment till December 2.

What will the database be used for?

Under the proposed amendment, the Registrar General of India will create a national database of registered births and deaths which will be used to update the following registers:

  • Population Register prepared under the Citizenship Act, 1955
  • Electoral Registers or Electoral Rolls prepared under Representation of People Act, 1951
  • Aadhaar Database prepared under Aadhaar Act, 2016,
  • Ration Card database prepared under National Food Security Act, 2013 (NFSA);
  • Passport Database prepared under the Passport Act
  • Driving Licence database under Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Act, 2019

Database violates right to privacy, will be used for NPR-NRC: Critics

In a series of tweets last month, MP Asaduddin Owaisi highlighted that the database will be used to create the National Register of Citizens and update electoral rolls while adding that it was unconstitutional:

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Further, Owaisi also claimed that the amendment violates the right to privacy, using data collected for one purpose for another purpose altogether:

Meanwhile, security researcher Srinivas Kodali pointed out that the aim of the amendment was to create a ‘360 degree profile databases’, comparing it to recent measures by the Hyderabad Police:

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Reporter at MediaNama. Email: nishant@medianama.com

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