Inhuman policies

The Indian State starved to death an eleven year old girl because her family’s ration card was not linked to Aadhar card. Santosh Kumari of Simdega district of Jharkhand died because she was starving for nearly eight days. The very poor family she was born into could not get a ration card because they had no Aadhar card. Unable to buy food from the open market the family had to go without food. In no civilized country has the State the right to deprive a citizen from his or her basic right to food, shelter and medical care. Except in India which is supposed to be the fastest growing economy in the world. What makes this tragedy more poignant is that those who refused to issue the family a ration card because they did not have an Aadhar card was flouting the order of the country’s highest judicial forum, the Supreme Court.
Confronted with unsavoury questions, the official spokespersons of the BJP are saying that only bank accounts and PAN cards are mandatorily required to be linked to Aadhar card. But now even the privately owned mobile phone service providers are demanding that their subscribers must link their mobile connections to their respective Aadhar cards? These spokesperson have no answer to the question on what basis mobile phone service providers, cooking gas distributors and authorities which issue ration cards are demanding Aadhar card numbers from their clients. Things are being stretched to absurd, indeed, insane extent. Even for cremating a dead person production of his or her Aadhar card has been made compulsory. What happens if the poor fellow did not have an Aadhar card? Will he or she not be cremated and his or her body left to rot? 
There must be a limit to absurdity. At this rate, some day some authority may issue a diktat that no baby can be delivered, that is, it cannot arrive in this world, unless it has an Aadhar card! This sounds crazy and ludicrous but, well, if it is necessary to have an Aadhar card to cremate someone who is dead, it may be equally necessary to have an Aadhar card for a baby to be delivered. Aadhar card data are confidential and cannot be accessed by any private body which includes gas distributors and mobile service providers. The Supreme Court is seized of the matter. Until it gives its verdict, insistence on production of Aadhar card must be kept in abeyance.

Monday, 23 October, 2017