Just after days of the big announcement by Election Commission on a successful partnership with Google India , Election Commission has now forcefully withdrawn from the tie-up citing major security concerns.
After the Election Commission’s earlier announced of tie-up with Google, all major political parties and several others raised concerns over national security. As most of them express concern over sharing of highly sensitive data of Indians citizens to a foreign company especially from United States, where their intelligence agencies are secretly collecting this data as exposed by Edward Snowden.
Electoral data of a Indian citizen would include his/her photo, address, signature and other sensitive information, which if get hold by a single entity (like US intelligence agency) can be devastating.
The ruling party, Congress has written to the Chief Election Commissioner raising security concerns over the proposed partnership with Google and hoped it will not have any effect on the electoral process and national security. On the other hand BJP also raised concern over it and said the issue could have been discussed first at an all-party meeting by Election Commission.
According to Times of India report, during the commission meeting attended by Chief Election Commissioner VS Sampath and election commissioners HS Brahma and SNA Zaidi, deliberated on the issue and decided not to go ahead. “After due consideration, the commission has decided not to pursue it any further“.
If the partnership went ahead Google will be offering its resources to Election Commission of India for the next six months, starting by second week of January 2014. Some includes the Google search that allow voters to check their enrollment status online and Google Maps service that allow voters to locate and navigate to their polling stations.