Half Full-Half Empty syndrome

The discussions on DPDPB 2022 in the professional circles have reminded us of the dilemma about the Glass-Half-Half-empty syndrome.

Those of you who followed my series of articles on “Shape of Things to Come” are aware that I myself have many expectations and probably DPDPB 2022 is far different from what I myself would have liked.

However, instead of worrying about what is not done, it is time to reflect what can be done now. After all a glass half full is actually full with half water and half air. It is left to us to pour more water and make it full if that is what we want.

I therefore urge all professionals and present day critics to look at the positive aspects of the Bill and facilitate its passage.

In fact, had the Bill been as complicated as PDPB 2019 or GDPR, consultants like us will have more work to do. If it is too simple, the role of consultants would be less. If the penalty is thousand crores we can scare companies in to investing more into compliance than when the penalty is not more than Rs 500 crores peppered with Voluntary undertaking, Mediation etc.

But our commitment need not be to our making ourselves indispensable as consultants. It is to make the society better. If Privacy law will make the society better, we do support it. But if Government adopts a simple law and wants to make compliance less painful, we need to welcome it.

We will give our suggestions to the Government when the public comments are submitted which may point out many omissions. But it is not necessary to pick any shortcomings and start criticising the Bill.

We all know that this Bill will be supplemented with the Rules and every detail which has been left out can be brought back in the rules. Some legal professionals may challenge this approach as dependency on subordinate legislation. But this will provide flexibility to the legislation and hence will be more practical.

Those critics who are objecting to the lack of clarity of DPB constitution should look at how Supervisory authorities are appointed in EU countries. Do they have the same rigorous standard that they should be a retired Supreme Court judge only? If DPB is made into a “Tribunal” then who will take care of all the developmental requirements?

DPB has to be therefore led by a Corporate CEO type person. If critics force the hands of the Government by going to the Court, the Government has the option of reducing the DPB into a glorified Adjudication office and take over all aspects of Governance of the law into a department of MeitY which will be headed by a Deputy Secretary level official.

I therefore urge those who are contemplating on challenging the Bill after it is passed or during the Parliamentary debate to consider whether it is good for the society to elt this Bill pass and later try to contribute through the DPB to ensure that the rules are designed properly.


About Vijayashankar Na

Naavi is a veteran Cyber Law specialist in India and is presently working from Bangalore as an Information Assurance Consultant. Pioneered concepts such as ITA 2008 compliance, Naavi is also the founder of Cyber Law College, a virtual Cyber Law Education institution. He now has been focusing on the projects such as Secure Digital India and Cyber Insurance
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