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Parliament Watch: No data on internet shutdowns but much ado about Aadhaar linkage, cryptocurrency and more

Amid the Monsoon Session of Parliament, we round up the most important questions and developments that shape tech policy in India

The Government of India stuck to its usual stand-by of feigning ignorance with regards to censorship data. As such, it had no focused answers regarding internet shutdowns or social media regulations. Nonetheless, the central government had a lot to say about its success on Aadhar linkage with ration cards, cryptocurrency and lower digital frauds. Here’s a summary on all that was said in the last week on these topics and more. Where’s the data on internet shutdowns? Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh asked the government to confirm with data points whether India is the leading country in the number of internet disruptions and internet shutdowns. However, the central government said it has no data regarding such incidents because temporary internet suspensions are handled by state governments. “Centralized data of internet shutdown is not maintained by the government,” said the Information and Broadcasting Ministry when asked about the number of internet shutdowns in the last five years. Singh had also asked whether “internet shutdowns have been regularly used as a tool for routine policing and even administrative purposes and not for public emergencies” but got no response. 99% of total ration cards linked with Aadhaar The government declared that 99.1 percent of 19.5 crore ration cards under National Food Security Act (NFSA) have been seeded with the Aadhaar number of at least one person in every household. The rest of the ration cards are expected to be seeded by September 30. Meanwhile, regarding questions about the ‘Performance audit on functioning of…

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I'm interested in the shaping and strengthening of rights in the digital space. I cover cybersecurity, platform regulation, gig worker economy. In my free time, I'm either binge-watching an anime or off on a hike.

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