Will govt use proposed unified database of births, deaths for NRC-NPR? Know what Owaisi says

Hyderabad: Hyderabad MP and All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) Asaduddin Owaisi on Sunday reacted to the central government’s proposal to create a national database of births and deaths.

On his Twitter account, Owaisi alleged that the database will be used for the NRC-NPR exercise. He also said that the proposal violates Article 324 of the Indian constitution that gives independence to the Election Commission of India (ECI).

He further wrote, “The right to privacy includes the right to be protected from such acts where data is collected for one purpose (in this case, birth registration) and to use it for other purposes not expressly authorised by the person giving their data (NPR, voter enrolment, etc).”.

Expressing apprehension over the proposal, he tweeted, ” If this is used for proving citizenship or enrolment in electoral rolls, how many will get excluded? Remember, proof of citizenship requires you to not only prove that YOU were born in India but also that your parents are Indian. How will you do it when no doc is proof enough?”.

His reaction was a result of the government’s proposal to amend the Registration of Births and Deaths Act, 1969 to require the Registrar General of India to maintain a national database of registered births and deaths.

The database may be used, after the central government’s approval, for updating NPR, electoral rolls, aadhaar, passport, etc.

The amendment will also empower the chief registrar to issue instructions to the state governments for the maintenance of a unified database of civil registration records at the state level. The chief registrar will also ensure integration of the state-level database with the database at the national level which will be maintained by the Registrar General of India, TOI reported.

Although, registration of births and deaths falls under the concurrent list of the Indian constitution, currently, it is carried out by the state governments.