Govt May Review Provisions of Geospatial Bill: India




New Delhi, (PTI) Government may review some of the provisions of a draft bill that proposes jail term of seven years and a fine up to Rs 100 crore if anyone wrongly depictsIndia’s map after some individuals and groups opposed them.

A Home Ministry official said the draft ‘The Geospatial Information Regulation Bill, 2016’ was made public, seeking views and suggestions on its various provisions.

“We are open to consider all sensible suggestions that may come with regard to the draft bill,” the official said.

Geospatial Bill india

May 31 was the last date for sending suggestions for the draft bill. However, the Home Ministry is yet to examine all the suggestions sent by public.

According to the draft Geospatial Information RegulationBill, it will be mandatory to take permission from a government authority before acquiring, disseminating,publishing or distributing any geospatial information ofIndia.

“No person shall depict, disseminate, publish or distribute any wrong or false topographic information of India including international boundaries through internet platforms or online services or in any electronic or physical form.

“Whoever acquired any geospatial information of India in contravention of the law shall be punished with a fine ranging from Rs 1 crore to Rs 100 crore and/ or imprisonment for a period up to seven years,” according to the draft bill.

The government also proposed to set up a Security VettingAuthority to carry out security vetting of the GeospatialInformation of India in a time bound manner and as per the regulations framed by an apex committee.

However, there have been criticism from various quarters,saying the provisions of the draft bill are stringent and may violate privacy of individuals.

The Home Ministry official discounted the apprehensions,saying except authorized agencies, that too after due permission, no one can invade anyone’s privacy.

Geospatial Information means geospatial imagery or data acquired through space or aerial platforms such as satellite,aircraft, airships, balloons, unmanned aerial vehicles including value addition or graphical or digital data depicting natural or man-made physical features, phenomenon or boundaries of the earth or any information related there to including surveys, charts, maps, terrestrial photos referenced co-ordinate system and having attributes.




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