Citizens' Issues
'UPA awarded Aadhaar card projects over Rs.13,000 crore without tenders'
Aadhaar card projects of the UIDAI worth over Rs.13,000 crore were awarded without issuing tenders by the previous UPA government, according to a RTI response, an activist said here on Saturday.
 
RTI activist Anil Galgali had submitted queries under the RTI to the UIDAI officials, Public Information Officer S.S. Bisht and Deputy Director-cum-PIO R. Harish who provided the replies about the amount spent on the projects which was then headed by technocrat Nandan Nilekani.
 
In the reply, the UIDAI officials disclosed that total project contracts worth Rs.13,663.22 crore were awarded without any tenders of which an amount of Rs.6,563 crore has been already spent on issuing 90.3 crore Aadhar Cards till May 2015.
 
They further informed that a total 25 companies were awarded different responsibilities for the massive project and their empanelment was done under the process guidelines of Request For Empanelment of May 19, 2014.
 
"This is shocking as various sections of people, including the Supreme Court and civil society groups have expressed serious concerns about the right to privacy with sensitive personal data of 125 crore population going in the hands of private companies," Galgali told IANS.
 
He urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to order a probe into the UIDAI to ensure transparency in the award of contracts for Aadhaar cards.
 
"The sensitive datas of finger prints and iris of each and every Indian could be unsafe with private companies," cautioned Harsheet Shah, cyber law expert-cum-researcher.
 
According to the information, some of the companies awarded more than one project works include: Tata Consultancy Service, Mac Associates, Wipro, HCL, HP India Sales Pvt. Ltd., National Informatics Centre, Sagem Morpho Securities Pvt. Ltd, Satyam Computer Services Ltd, L1 Identity Solutions, Totem International Ltd., Linkwel Telesystems Pvt. Ltd. Sai Infosystems India Ltd, Geodesic Ltd, ID Solutions, NISG, SQTC, Telesima Communications Pvt. Ltd.
 
Others which secured a single contract include: Reliance Communication, Tata Communications, Aircel, Bharati Airtel, BSNL and Railtel Corporation of India Ltd.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Rail Track Washout: Blame it on rising encroachment and construction
Although rail traffic between Mumbai and Pune has been restored, officials have blamed rising encroachment and construction activities responsible for the track wash out 
 
Railway traffic on the Mumbai-Pune stretch was majorly affected, after tracks were washed off due to heavy rains near Talegaon on Friday evening around 4:45pm.
  
Though the up and down lines were restored by 3:45am Saturday, services continued to be rescheduled with major delays.
 
Railway officials blamed the rising encroachments and construction activity near railway tracks. “The track washout was caused by a probable blockage of natural drains and construction activity. The Mumbai-Pune stretch is one of the oldest railway lines and there is no other reason for such a washout of century-old maintained lines, The sudden force of water onto the tracks led to the cave-in,” a senior official from Pune division said.
 
Road traffic also remained hit near the Adoshi tunnel in Bhor ghat, and near Kamshet on Friday afternoon. 

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Education best way to fight poverty: Modi

Modi said every person wants his or her child to lead a life better than what they had led

 

More efforts are needed to eradicate poverty in the country and that education "is the best way to fight poverty", Prime Minister Narendra Modi said here on Friday.
 
"Our efforts to remove poverty over the years have not yielded the results we desired. The speed (of removing poverty) needs to improve," Modi said at a rally in Uttar Pradesh's Varansi city, also his parliamentary constituency.
 
He said every person wants his or her child to lead a life better than what they had led. 
 
"I urge all of you (in this gathering), whatever circumstances are, ensure that your children receive education. Education is the best (and even the least expensive) way to fight poverty," he said.
 

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COMMENTS

MG Warrier

2 years ago

Allow me to quote 2 paras from my article “Human development indicators: Need for a National Education Plan” posted at this site on October 17, 2012(Included as Chapter III.4 Literacy: A tool for Development in my 2014 book “Banking, Reforms & Development: Development Issues in 21st Century India”. I had submitted a copy of my book to PM in August 2014, which was acknowledged):
Ensuring universal education, which alone can bring about a change in the quality of governance also, must at this stage graduate into a massive movement supported by political will, whole-hearted participation from all households, legislatures, local bodies and educational institutions, failing which, the present effort also will remain a restatement of noble intentions with no specific ground level results.
*** ***
One is tempted to fear that there are some vested interests like an interest in keeping unskilled labour cheap and still worse, showing higher percentage of children passing out of schools and joining colleges (such statistics would better the country’s position in international assessments!) which keep the drop-out level before Standard X alarmingly high. The targets for Gross Enrolment Rates at secondary level can be achieved with ease if pass out percentage at primary level is low!

M G Warrier

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