•      Sun Dec 3 2023

Lawmakers seek guarantee of citizen’s right to privacy

House of Representatives
House of Representatives Nepal

Kathmandu: The State Affairs and Good Governance Committee under the House of Representatives today completed clause-wise deliberations on the bill relating to the National ID Card and Registration.

The meeting directed to the Home Ministry’s officials to revise the bill by incorporating feedback given by lawmakers during the course of deliberations, said Committee President Shashi Shrestha.

Prior to this, while taking part in the deliberations, lawmakers suggested the government that it should remain highly sensitive and aware of possibilities of security challenges in the management of data to be recorded for the distribution of national ID card to be carried out on the basis of the use of foreign technology.

They demanded that methods, processes and a mechanism needed to be adopted to make sure confidentiality of citizen’s personal details/ information to be registered for the national ID card and to prevent the data leakage be clearly defined in the law.

The government was advised to follow national and international exercises in regard with maintaining people’s right to privacy. They also inquired about cooperation and coordination to be made with international organisations in course of producing the card.

Hinting at the possibility of abuse of personal data and information, they sought stern action against those people responsible for the data leakage from a data store while some of lawmakers were of the view that only stern punishment was not sufficient to control crime, but there should be consideration for giving an opportunity for self- correction.

The government has come up with the concept of national ID card containing all personal information for what it said to end the compulsion of carrying several ID cards such as the citizenship, driving license, voter’s ID and the senior citizenship certificates and so son.

In the meeting, committee members Pampha Bhusal, Dilendra Prasad Badu, Jhapat Rawal, Rekha Sharma, Yasoda Gurung, Nawaraj Silwal, Prem Suwal, and Bijay Subba took part in the deliberations.

Lawmaker Devendra Raj Kandel questioned the Home Minister why the responsibility of printing the card was given to a foreign company in haste bypassing a bidding process.