Is India turning a data colony?: Pai

Shobha Roy Abhishek Law Kolkata | Updated on January 09, 2018 Published on November 27, 2017

TV Mohandas Pai, Chairman, Manipal Global Education

More stringent laws needed to curtail the influence of digital giants

India is under the threat of becoming a ‘digital colony’ with entities such as Google and Facebook having virtual control over data.

According to TV Mohandas Pai, chairman, Manipal Global Education, India needs data privacy and data residency laws to ensure the security.

“India is in danger of becoming a digital colony. We became free politically, economically but now we may become a digital colony owing to the country’s digital giants,” Pai told BusinessLine on the sidelines of the Horasis Asia Meeting organised by the Indian Chamber of Commerceon Monday.

He said it is difficult to build an enterprise to compete against such entities who nearly “owns” India.

Need for data privacy

Advocating the need for data privacy, he said, it would help make sure that the data will not be used by somebody without the concerned person’s permission. Data residency would ensure that tit remains within the country.

It is important to ensure that these digital giants, and others should store the data they have about Indians in data centres within India, and this should be subject to Indian law.

According to Pai, Bengal must focus on future and on its core strength, which is human capital and education system.

Focus on future

The state should focus on new industries such as robotics, IOT, stem cell research and bespoke DNA medicine. Focus should be on creating centres of excellence and human capital. “The focus should be on start-ups sector. In the next two-to-three years it should become centre for start-up industry for east of India. Kolkata can be the focal point for eastern India.”

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Published on November 27, 2017
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