India News News Report

Personal Data Protection Bill 2019 Withdrawn After 81 Amendments

Govt withdraws personal data bill
The Centre told the members of the Joint Parliamentary Committee that a new Bill that fits into the comprehensive legal framework is being worked on.

Mumbai:  The Centre on August 3 withdrew the Personal Data Protection Bill, 2019, and will be introducing a new Bill.

The Personal Data Protection Act, which aimed to regulate how an individual’s data can be used by businesses and the government, was repealed after a joint parliamentary committee proposed 81 amendments.¬† According to government sources, a report of the Joint Parliamentary Committee, work is underway on a comprehensive legal framework that paves the way for a new bill.

The bill was sent to the jury in 2019 after facing vehement protests from the opposition Congress and the TMC, among others, which alleged that the data privacy law violated the fundamental rights of citizens.
Opposition parties have said the law gives the government broad powers to access people’s personal data in unclear circumstances, citing national security and other reasons.

The bill defined personal data as information that could help in the identification of an individual and has characteristics, traits and other features of a person’s identity.

Opposition parties said the law would make it easier for the government to spy on citizens, while the government said penalties for unauthorized use of the data were sufficient to prevent such cases.

The law also reportedly required¬†major¬†social media platforms to offer an¬†identity verification¬†option, a potentially¬†previous¬†effort to¬†stem¬†the spread of “fake¬†news”.

The requirement would likely raise a number of technical and political issues for businesses of social media platforms such as Facebook and its WhatsApp and Instagram, Twitter units, all of which have millions of users in India.

The Personal Data Protection Act has been eagerly awaited by major technology companies and industry stakeholders as it could change the way all major internet companies process, store and transfer Indian consumer data.

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