Honourable Minister of State for IT, Sri Rajeev Chandrashekar (RC) launched the first public consultation on the proposed Digital India Act 2023 (DIA2023) at Hotel Conrad, Bangalore on 9th March 2023.
During the interaction, RC presented the thoughts of the Government on the proposed law which will replace the Information Technology Act 2000 and also answered queries from the audience both those who were present physically as well as many in the virtual conference.
Mr RC was extremely cordial and provided honest answers to all the queries raised. It was a very pleasant interaction. Mr Rakesh Maheshwari the Group Coordinator, Cyber Law Division and Dr Sandeep Chatterjee who is succeeding him in this role were also present during the interaction.
Mr RC highlighted that currently ITA 2000 along with the Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code, Certifying Authority Rules, SPDI rules, Section 79 rules, Indian CERT and Cyber Appellate Tribunal as the framework of regulations.
He indicated that this framework will be replaced with the Digital India Act 2023 along with the DPDPB2023, DIA rules, National Data Protection Policy, and ongoing amendments that will happen to IPC.
The main goals set up for DIA include the Open Internet, Online Safety and Trust, Accountability and Quality of Service, Adjudicatory Mechanism, New Technologies etc.
The broad contour of the Act was laid out as follows:
5.Online Safety and Trust including Harm
8. Regulatory Framework,
9. Emerging technologies and guiding rules
It may not be surprising if DIA 2023 is also as simple as DPDPB2022 and most of the Chapter XI moving to IPC. Already the Jan Vishwas Bill has “de-criminalized” many sections of ITA 2000 and the trend appears to be to keep all crimes under IPC and relieve DIT 2023 from the burden of CrPC/IPC.
It was suggested that public may send their views and recommendations which will be duly considered. During the question and answer session that followed, Mr RC indicated that the intention of the Government was to bring the law in 2023 and the consultation process may take 3-6 months before a draft law would be published.
The suggestions may be sent by email to to email@example.com
P.S: During the interaction, one could gather that the DPDPB2022 is done and dusted and the attention of the Government is on the DIA 2023. We can therefore expect that the DPDPB2022 will be presented in the Parliament as expected in the next half of the current Parliamentary session starting on March 13.