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Report on Data Protection Bill: What Are the Main Concerns Raised by Dissenters?

TMC MPs Derek O'Brien and Mahua Moitra described the 2019 bill as "Orwellian" in nature.

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After nearly two years, the much-awaited and long-overdue report by the Joint Parliamentary Committee on the Data Protection Bill 2019 was tabled on Monday, 22 November.

Though the report has not been made available in the public domain yet, as many as seven MP’s from the Congress Trinamool Congress and the BJD have submitted dissent notes to the committee since some clauses give the Centre sweeping powers to collect and process data.

While Congress MP Jairam Ramesh in his dissent note stated that the bill assumes that “constitutional right to privacy arises only where operations and activities of private companies are concerned”, TMC MPs Derek O'Brien and Mahua Moitra described the 2019 Bill as "Orwellian" in nature and raised questions on the functioning of the committee.

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Though the report reportedly has introduced a few positive provisions as well, including mandatory disclose if users' data has been passed on to a third party, the blank cheque of relaxations given to the Centre for collecting and using personal and non-personal data is a matter of grave concern.

Joining me today to understand what these clauses signal and how concerning they are is, Vakasha Sachdev, The Quint’s Legal Editor. Tune in!

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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