The focus of the draft Digital Personal Data Protection Bill, which has been put out by the government for public consultation, is on protecting internet users from online harm, and creating a safe and trusted digital ecosystem as India is a digital economy powerhouse today, Communications and Information Technology Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said.
The minister urged all stakeholders to give feedback on the draft bill, saying that the government will examine everything with an open mind.
In an exclusive interview with ANI, the minister said the Digital Personal Data Protection Bill, 2022, will be brought before Parliament after proper consultations.
“Digital Personal Data Protection bill has been uploaded for public consultation today. I request all stakeholders to give feedback on the draft, we’ll examine everything with an open mind and take bill to Parliament after proper consultations,” he said.
The minister quoted in media the principles concerning privacy which have been laid down by the Supreme Court and various judgments, and learning based on experience of various countries have been included in “neat and very nice way”.
He said the “language of the Bill is simple and straightforward, attempted in the philosophy of women’s empowerment”.
The minister said consent notices from apps or platforms will now be available to users in all Indian languages.
Vaishnaw, who is Minister for Railways, Communications, Electronics and Information Technology, said Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given a lot of emphasis on the consultation process.
“I will request all the stakeholders to please give your views on the draft Bill. We have drafted the Bill in a language, which is very straightforward, simple to understand and easy to understand. Some very innovative things have been attempted in this Bill. First, the consent notice, which comes from any of the applications or any of the platforms, will now have to be given in any one of these scheduled languages. So that means the Indian languages will now be available to users for getting the consent notice,” he said.
“The second important thing is that we have attempted philosophy of women’s empowerment that Prime Minister Narendra Modiji is commited to. We have attempted to use the word ‘she’ and ‘her’ in the entire Bill instead of ‘he, him and his’. So this is an innovative thing which has been attempted in the Bill.
“The third thing is that we have made sure that all the principles of privacy which have been laid down by the Supreme Court and various judgments, and based on the experience of various countries. We have included all the principles in a very neat and very nice way. Simultaneously, we have made sure that the startup innovation ecosystem and small businesses are not encumbered by a huge compliance burden,” Vaishnaw said.
He said the government has tried to create a digital by-design compliance framework.
“The compliance framework is designed right from the beginning in a digital way, so that it becomes simple, easily accessible way for implementing the Bill.”
The Digital Data Protection Bill 2019 was withdrawn from Parliament and the government had said it will come up with a revised bill.
According to the draft Bill, the central government will establish a panel to review complaints and any non-compliance. Data processors would undertake measures including data protection, impact assessment and periodic audit in relation to the Act. The government may notify countries to which data processors may transfer personal data.