With concerns related to privacy and security, attendee of a recent seminar thought, they would get to hear from a lone representative of UIDAI. But, in the middle of the seminar, the UIDAI representative just vanished from the seminar, leaving behind unanswered questions.
Following the concerns raised by experts, Bengaluru-based Ecumenical Christian Center (ECC) organised a seminar on the unique identification (UID) programme of the union government. However, to the surprise of everyone, including the organizers, a lone representative of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) vanished in the middle of the seminar. This has raised questions about the seriousness on part of the UIDAI to discuss issues related with the ambitious UID project.
There were about 75-80 experts including some from IT companies like Wipro and Infosys present for the seminar. Sunil Abraham, executive director, Centre for Internet and Society and Mathew Thomas of Citizens Action Forum, addressed it.
According to Dr M Mani Chacko, director, ECC, the Center organised the seminar in a hope to create more awareness about the UID project. "We need more information related with the project which involves privacy and security concerns. We wanted either Mr (Nandan) Nilekani or someone from his core team to address us in the seminar. But they sent an intern, who did not speak a single word and was rather observing the proceedings, Dr Mani Chacko said.
The audience was apprehensive about the UID project, especially in light of cancellation or rejection of similar projects across the world. The UIDAI should come forward and should provide all information, answer all concerns of people, the audience felt. However, by sending an intern, who was nowhere to be seen after a sometime, the authority is not presenting an impressive picture, some of the attendees said.
"I also wanted to ask some question to the UIDAI representative, but when I turned back, I could not find him there in the audience," said Dr Mani Chacko.
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The State is planning a single-window clearance for different housing projects, similar to the facility already in place for slum rehabilitation projects
The State government is planning to create a single-window clearance for different projects like cluster development and affordable housing, among others. Maharashtra already has a single-window clearance mechanism in place for Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) projects.
"We created one-window clearance for SRA projects, likewise we are creating
one-window clearance for other projects like cluster development, affordable housing etc," said Sachin Ahir, minister of State for housing, Maharashtra.
Further, the State government is also looking at a joint venture with the Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (MHADA) to develop the city's suburbs. Any development under such a joint venture will have a 2.5 floor space index (FSI) on any private plot. It is also looking at developing vital projects in the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) region with MHADA.
The State also came up with a new Act in April 2010 on green housing. This Act is likely to be implemented by August 2010. "With this (Act), we can see future townships becoming eco-friendly; they will use recycled water and solar energy systems. We are also trying to encourage green housing in large townships by granting them additional incentives and FSI. Additional incentives and FSI will also be given for parking spaces," said Mr Ahir.
Further, deemed conveyance will come up in this Assembly session. "(The) Deemed Conveyance Act is in process. The Maharashtra Chamber of Housing Industry (MCHI) has proposed to us that the Act be revised. However, it cannot be revised. We are open to have a conversation with them. Deemed conveyance will come up in this Assembly session," said Mr Ahir.