Data protection, Aadhaar bills listed for budget session
Around 40 Bills have been listed to be taken up in first session of 17th Lok Sabha.
Personal Data Protection Bill, Aadhaar (Amendment) Bill, and DNA Technology Regulations Bill are part of a 25-page bulletin, with a list of bills proposed to be introduced in the Budget session, uploaded on the Lok Sabha website on Friday.
The data protection bill sets out how the personal data of individuals is processed by the government and private entities incorporated in India and abroad. The government believes storing and processing of all critical personal data and storing acopy of all personal data within Indian shores is important for national security and access. India is the largest open market in the world for internet companies where the dominant players are US firms such as Google, Microsoft, Facebook and Amazon. Chinese companies such as Byte-Dance and Alibaba are also making inroads into the market. The government has received inputs on the data protection bill from the ministries of electronics and information technology, law and home affairs, people familiar with the development told ET. The bill hasn’t taken a final shape and is yet to reach the Cabinet.
The bill is likely to be referred to the yet-to-be-formed standing committee on information technology before finalising it – something that may not happen before the winter session, they said.
One of the sources said the government is waiting for US secretary of state Michael Pompeo’s visit to India this week, during which the proposed data localisation will be discussed. The US upped the ante against India’s data localisation rule, saying it is discriminative and increases storage costs for American companies.
Many Internet activists have raised privacy concerns around data localisation in India.
Pompeo, in his address during the India Ideas Summit of US-India Business Council in Washington DC recently, had said trade barriers and data localisation requirements are issues of major concern in its trade engagement with India. The US has alleged that such moves damage the digital economy and harm privacy.