In the past decade, with the rapid increase in internet use and the ubiquity of Aadhaar, demands for a data protection law for India became stronger. In December 2019, the Indian government introduced the Personal Data Protection Bill, 2019 in the Lok Sabha, which aims to create the first cross-sectoral legal framework for data protection in the country. However, criticisms of its provisions are acquiring increasing salience due to the use of technology-enabled surveillance and data collection techniques to fight the coronavirus pandemic.

As part of our Political Economy Seminar Series, we hosted a virtual discussion with Anirudh Burman where he examined the Personal Data Protection Bill, 2019, in light of the use of surveillance to fight COVID-19, based on his working paper, “Will India’s Proposed Data Protection Law Protect Privacy and Promote Growth?” The discussion was moderated by Suyash Rai.


Anirudh Burman

Anirudh Burman is an associate fellow at Carnegie India. He works on key issues relating to public institutions, public administration, the administrative and regulatory state, and state capacity.


Suyash Rai

Suyash Rai is a fellow at Carnegie India. His research focuses on the political economy of economic reforms, and the performance of public institutions in India. His current research looks at the financial sector, the fiscal system, and the infrastructure sector.