Union Minister of State for Electronics & IT Rajeev Chandrasekhar has held consultations with stakeholders on the soon-to-be introduced Digital India Bill, an official said on Friday.
New Delhi, March 10,2023: Union Minister of State for Electronics & IT Rajeev Chandrasekhar has held consultations with stakeholders on the soon-to-be introduced Digital India Bill, an official said on Friday.
Officials said that for the first time, design, architecture and goals of a Bill are being discussed with stakeholders at its pre-introduction stage.
These consultations are part of the Digital India Dialogues in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s consultative approach to law and policy making, a statement noted.
Making a presentation on the objectives and goals of the Bill, Chandrasekhar said the proposed Bill aims to help India achieve the goal of becoming a trillion-dollar digital economy and becoming a significant trusted player in the Global Value Chains for digital products, devices, platforms and solutions.
The Minister said that the proposed Digital India Act aims to help develop India as a globally competitive innovation and entrepreneurial ecosystem while at the same time protecting the rights of its citizens.
The Minister listed some of the guiding principles for the proposed legislation, which include managing the complexities of the Internet and rapid expansion of the types of intermediaries addressing the risks of emerging technologies, protecting citizen’s rights, managing and setting guardrails for the varied intermediaries on the Internet.
Stating that the tech ecosystem in general and the Internet in particular has evolved significantly after Information Technology Act (IT Act) came into being in 2000, Chandrasekhar said that the new law has to be evolvable and consistent with changing market trends, disruption in technologies, and keep in mind protection of “digital nagriks” from user harm.
“Internet that began as a force of good has today become vulnerable to various types of complex user harms like catfishing, cyber stalking, cyber trolling, gaslighting, phishing, revenge porn, cyber-flashing, dark web, etc, and there is an urgent need for a specialised and dedicated adjudicatory mechanism for online civil and criminal offences,” the Minister observed.
Reiterating that the Digital India Bill is an attempt by the government to bring in global standard cyber laws, Chandrasekhar said: “We want to ensure the Internet is open, safe, trusted and accountable, and accelerate the growth of innovation and technology and create a framework for accelerating digitalisation of the government and to strengthen democracy and governance.”
The Minister also spoke of promoting free market access and fair-trade practices and ease of doing business and ease of compliance for start-ups and delivery of public services through online and mobile platforms in a simple, accessible, inter-operable and citizen-friendly manner in the same thread.