Sundar Pichai, the CEO for Google has written a letter to Ravi Shankar Prasad, the Union IT Minister for the Government of India. In the letter, Pichai has focused on the “free flow of data across borders” emphasizing that it is essential to maintain the pace of innovation. This comes months after a draft version of the bill was submitted by Justice B N Srikrishna and days after the government extended the deadline for feedback on the bill from the public. The government is also inviting comments on the draft from various industry stakeholders.
The bill aims to introduce a number of rules and restrictions in order to safeguard the personal information of users. It will also define who will be responsible for the protection and safety of data while clarifying the rights of the users and adding penalties for companies and organizations that are violating the bill. Pichai added that the free flow of data across borders along with a focus on the security and privacy of the user data will push start-ups to innovate and expand. He pointed out that these start-ups and companies will help the country by contributing to the digital economy of the country.
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The report by Reuters added that this was part of a “thank you” letter to Prasad who recently visited the headquarters of Google in California recently. The reason to pen this letter down is due to the fact that the bill is aiming to restrict the data within the country which would result in lesser revenue for technology companies.
Google is not the only company that is opposed to some of the rules that are part of the draft as industry bodies including Nasscom and its Data Security Council including the Broadband India Forum have criticized the rule. According to the report, some companies have asked the bill to be consistent with the best practices in the International market to resemble Cross-Border Privacy Rules by APEC and Privacy Frameworks (OECD) that are adapted to the needs of the country.