CBSE Promotes Aarogya Setu App, Asks Schools to Sign Up Parents

The education board has requested schools to sign up parents to the app.

2 min read
Image of Aarogya Setu contact tracing app, used for representational purposes.

The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) on Thursday, 23 April, asked schools to urge parents to download the government's Aarogya Setu app, in an effort to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.

From India’s public broadcaster Prasar Bharati to private educational institutions, like Sharda University and Mother’s International School, many have made it mandatory to download the app

On 2 April, the Central government launched the Aarogya Setu app for Android and Apple smartphones. The app is meant to be a ‘contact tracing’ tool – ie, it is meant to help determine if you have come in contact with someone “who could have tested COVID-19 positive”.

When you download the app, you need to say whether you have recently travelled, and whether you’ve been in contact with someone who might have contracted the virus. Once you’ve done that and been given your unique ID, the app will keep a log of all the other people you’ve been in contact with who had the app on their phone, using Bluetooth and location data (the app recommends these have to be kept on at all times to function).


If anyone who has the app tests positive for COVID-19, then the app will inform anyone who has been in contact with them as per its logs, and the information of who have been in contact with the infected person, can be used by the government for targeted testing and quarantine measures.

The app has come under severe criticism for privacy and surveillance concerns as well as the lack of audit and transparency.

While the app has received a major push from the prime minister himself, as well as the home ministry in its Nation Directive in COVID-19 Management issues on 15 April, there is no directive or order from the Government of India which says that the general public must download the app.

(With inputs from The Times of India)

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