Congress leader and chairperson of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Communications and Information Technology Shashi Tharoor was briefed by IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw on Thursday on the intentions behind the government’s decision to withdraw the data protection bill from the Lok Sabha.
Tharoor said Vaishnaw also engaged with him on the “principles that will animate a future bill”, which is promised for the Winter Session of Parliament.
The government withdrew the Personal Data Protection Bill from the Lok Sabha on Wednesday and said it will come out with a “set of fresh legislations” that will fit into the comprehensive legal framework. “The government will bring a set of new legislations for a comprehensive legal framework for the digital economy,” Vaishnaw, who moved for the withdrawal of the Bill in the House, said.
The government would hold a wide public consultation before putting the new legislation to Parliament, sources had said. “I welcome the initiative of Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw to brief me on the intentions behind GOI’s decision to withdraw the Data Protection Bill, and to engage with me on the principles that will animate a future bill, which is promised for the winter session of Parliament,” Tharoor tweeted, along with pictures of his meeting with Vaishnaw.
The government circulated a statement among the members of Parliament that contained the reasons for the withdrawal of the Bill, which was introduced on December 11, 2019 and referred to the Joint Committee of the Houses for examination. The report of the JCP was presented in the Lok Sabha in December last year. The withdrawal of the Bill was made part of the supplementary agenda of the Lok Sabha on Wednesday afternoon.
The Bill had proposed restrictions on the use of personal data without the explicit consent of citizens. It had also sought to provide the government with powers to grant exemptions to its probe agencies from the provisions of the Act, a move that was strongly opposed by Opposition MPs who had filed their dissent notes.