New House panel report on data protection bill likely by Nov 6

The constitution of the Data Protection Authority is also being closely worked out, with suggestion of a member appointed by the attorney general being floated
A new draft report by the joint parliamentary committee (JPC) looking into the Personal Data Protection Bill is likely to be circulated among all members by November 6 (Archive)
A new draft report by the joint parliamentary committee (JPC) looking into the Personal Data Protection Bill is likely to be circulated among all members by November 6 (Archive)
Updated on Oct 22, 2021 01:35 AM IST
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ByDeeksha Bhardwaj, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

A new draft report by the joint parliamentary committee (JPC) looking into the Personal Data Protection Bill is likely to be circulated among all members by November 6, people familiar with the matter said, after marathon discussions were held over some contentious clauses and suggestions.

The report is expected during the winter session this year.

“Most of the changes have been agreed upon by the committee,” one such person said, asking not to be named. “There was a lot of deliberation on how the new law must be in consonance with existing guidelines.”

Unverified accounts and what action to take against them was also discussed by the panel, the person added. The constitution of the Data Protection Authority is also being closely worked out, with suggestion of a member appointed by the attorney general being floated.

A second person familiar with the matter said that there was a lack of unanimity on certain issues. “Clause 35 and how many exemptions the government needs were highly debated,” this person said. “There needs to be a limit to the powers and whether they should be within the government or outside was discussed,” this person said.

The person added Clause 28, wherein the law proposes to make social media companies liable for content moderation, was also discussed. “Then issues of delegated legislation and whether there should be a process to verify the capacity of a child to give consent was also brought up. The last two days have seen intense session.”

The draft Personal Data Protection law was referred to a JPC to iron out several contentious issues in 2019. A previous draft was scheduled to be circulated among the members earlier this year but was abandoned when the then head, Meenakshi Lekhi, was inducted into the government and was replaced by the incumbent, PP Chaudhary.

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Wednesday, January 19, 2022