Software Freedom Law Center, India (SFLC.in) welcomes the draft Personal Data Protection Bill, 2022 published by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), Government of India. Legislative action to protect the data rights of Indians has been long pending, and we hope that this Bill, when introduced in Parliament, will provide the much needed relief. We also welcome the move by MeitY to invite public comments on the draft Bill.
Securing digital rights through legislative action is pertinent given the increasing adoption of technological solutions in India by the state and by private entities. The potency of data as an enabler of efficiency in delivery of services and ensuring ease of life is undeniable. However, the constitutionally protected right to privacy of individuals, and their right to autonomy, is made vulnerable when their personal data is not protected.
SFLC.in is keen to assist in the achievement of this objective, and makes the following recommendations to make the draft Digital Personal Data Protection Act, 2022 more rights respecting and in tune with the law laid down by the Supreme Court in K.S.Puttaswamy v Union of India. The comments attempt to supply suggestions in this vein. We have dealt with each provision of the draft Bill comprehensively, by highlighting issues which arise in the provision as it stands, and by providing recommendations which draw from our analysis, the previous data protection legislation considered in India, and the experiences of comparative jurisdictions.
Our recommendations can be found below: