Stung by attacks on “Aadhar” scheme by BJP’s Ananth Kumar, Congress candidate for Bangalore South Lok Sabha seat Nandan Nilekani has complained to EC against him, accusing him of being part of “pro-corruption and anti-development forces”. Nilekani, co-founder of Infosys and face of the “Aadhar” programme, charged that Kumar was trying to gain mileage by abusing a government programme like Aadhaar which he was himself promoting only a few months ago.
“I have said from the beginning that I am running a clean, honest campaign because I stand for a better kind of politics. My opponent is not doing the same,” he said in his personal blog on Wednesday, piqued by Kumar repeatedly attacking and mocking at the Aadhar programme in his campaign.
Nilekani, who also complained to Press Council of India against his opponent on Tuesday, said Kumar was attacking Aadhaar to draw attention away from his lack of achievements. “Just one question on Aadhaar the entire time he (Kumar) was in Parliament. And now, why this sudden concern? Just a few months ago, he was advertising himself on Aadhaar enrollment banners in Bangalore South. Once I entered politics however, he began to attack the programme,” he said.
It was sad that Kumar is doing this because he has no good record to defend, Nilekani said. “Now, he is using Modi to try and get elected because he has nothing to say about himself. He is attacking Aadhaar to draw attention away from his own lack of achievements,” he added.
“Kumar is part of the pro-corruption, anti-development forces who are trying to discredit a powerful anti-corruption effort, one that will empower ordinary citizens across the country,” Nilekani said. “The UIDAI never said that the number was mandatory.” Nilekani, who resigned as Chairman of Unique Identification Authority of India, after taking the political plunge recently, said.
“This is another falsehood that my opponent is spreading. Rather some government agencies may decide to make the number mandatory to remove leakages and fraud in their systems.” The ruling from the Supreme Court yesterday was in response to a motion filed by UIDAI itself, since the agency didn’t want to share resident data for a criminal investigation, Nilekani said. “The Supreme Court upheld the position of UIDAI.The UIDAI has always valued the privacy of resident data and the agency went to the courts to ensure that people’s privacy is protected,” he added.