Three key reforms have improved transparency, says Arun Jaitley

"The three key structural reforms implemented by the present government in recent years viz Aadhaar, Demonetisation and GST have brought transparency and efficiency in governance and helped in transition from cash to less cash economy and from informal to formal economy,"said Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.

By: PTI | Singapore | Updated: November 16, 2017 4:47 pm
Arun Jaitley, Jaitley and cashless economy, demonetisation, Aadhaar, GST, Indian economy, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. (Express file Photo)

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has said three key structural reforms — Aadhaar, Demonetisation and GST — have enhanced transparency and helped in transition from cash to less cash economy. Jaitley made this comment before a gathering of investors while highlighting various achievements like ease of doing business ranking by the World Bank.

“The three key structural reforms implemented by the present government in recent years viz Aadhaar, Demonetisation and GST have brought transparency and efficiency in governance and helped in transition from cash to less cash economy and from informal to formal economy,” he said in address to investors here on Wednesday.

To provide further impetus to the economy, the present government has implemented a slew of economic reforms one after the other, including the roll out of the game changing tax reform Goods and Services Tax (GST) from July 1, 2017; introduction of Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) and the re-capitalisation package for the banks, he said.Recapitalisation will help to redress the twin balance sheet problem and revive private investment, he added.

The finance minister also spoke about the major initiatives undertaken by the present government, including crackdown against black money through demonetisation and other follow-up measures, and major changes in the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Policy regime with an aim to make it more liberal and investor friendly. Various initiatives taken by the present government in the last three years resulted in India jumping in World Bank’s “Ease of Doing Business” Index from 142 in 2014 to 100 in October 2017, he added.

Jaitley, who is on two-day visit, met the CEO and Senior officials of sovereign wealth fund of Singapore GIC and discussed investment opportunities across multiple sectors in India, including National Investment and Infrastructure (NIIF).

Accompanying Economic Affairs Secretary S C Garg had a bilateral meeting with Tan Ching Yee, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Government of Singapore and discussed issues relating to the Host country’s concerns on the matters of Double Tax Avoidance Agreement (DTAA). During an investors’ conference, Garg responded to a number of questions relating to Double Tax Avoidance Agreement (DTAA) with Singapore, currency stability, fiscal deficit, India’s sovereign rating, supply chain and issues on power sector, among others.

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  1. R
    Reader
    Nov 16, 2017 at 8:41 pm
    Aadhaar is NOT a panacea but a frankenstein: The biometrics-based Aadhaar program is inherently flawed. Biometrics can be easily lifted by external means, there is no need to hack the system. High-resolution cameras can capture your fingerprints and iris information from a distance. Every eye hospital will have iris images of its patients. So another person can CLONE your fingerprints and iris images without your knowledge, and the same can be used for authentication. That is why advanced countries like the US, UK, etc. did not implement such a self-destructive biometrics-based system. If the biometric details of a person are COMPROMISED ONCE, then even a new Aadhaar card will not help the person concerned. This is NOT like blocking an ATM card and taking a new one.
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    1. R
      Reader
      Nov 16, 2017 at 8:41 pm
      UK’s Biometric ID Database was dismantled. Why the United Kingdom's biometrics-linked National Identi-ty Card project to create a centralized register of sensitive information about residents similar to Aadhaar was scrapped in 2010?? The reasons were the massive threat posed to the privacy of people, the possibility of a surveillance state, the dangers of maintaining such a huge centralized repository of personal information and the purposes it could be used for, the dangers of such a centralized database being hacked, and the unreliability of such large-scale biometric verification processes. The Aadhaar program was designed in 2009 by mainly considering the 'Identi-ty Cards Act 2006' of UK, but the UK stopped that project in 2010, whereas India continued with the biometrics-based program. We must think why the United Kingdom abandoned their project and destroyed the data collected. (Google: 'Identi-ty Cards Act 2006' and 'Identi-ty Documents Act 2010' )
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      1. R
        Reader
        Nov 16, 2017 at 8:41 pm
        A centralized and inter-linked biometric database like Aadhaar will lead to profiling and self-censorship, endangering freedom. Personal data gathered under the Aadhaar program is prone to misuse and surveillance. Aadhaar project has created a vulnerability to identi-ty fraud, even identi-ty theft. Easy harvesting of biometrics traits and publicly-available Aadhaar numbers increase the risk of impersonation, especially online and banking fraud. Centralized databases can be hacked. Biometrics can be cloned, copied and reused. Thus, BIOMETRICS CAN BE FAKED. High-resolution cameras can capture your fingerprints and iris information from a distance. Every eye hospital will have iris images of its patients. So another person can clone your fingerprints and iris images without your knowledge, and the same can be used for authentication. If the Aadhaar scheme is NOT STOPPED by the Supreme Court, the biometric features of Indians will soon be cloned, misused, and even traded.
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        1. R
          Reader
          Nov 16, 2017 at 8:40 pm
          The US Social Security Number (SSN) card has NO BIOMETRIC DETAILS, no photograph, no physical description and no birth date. All it does is confirm that a particular number has been issued to a particular name. Instead, a driving license or state ID card is used as an identification for adults. The US government DOES NOT collect the biometric details of its own citizens for the purpose of issuing Social Security Number. The US collects the fingerprints of only those citizens who are involved in any criminal activity (it has nothing to do with SSN), and the citizens of other countries who come to the US.
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