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Ker CM defends co-op society role in police verification for

Press Trust of India  |  Thiruvananthapuram 

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan told the state assembly on Wednesday the use of the software developed by the pro-Left ULCCS for police verification for passport by police will not result in any security breach or data theft.

Replying to a notice moved by Opposition Congress-led UDF seeking adjournment motion, he said the database of the information will be handed over only after cyber security audit and there was no reason for any worry.

Vijayan, while countering the Opposition argument on Uralungal Labour Contract Cooperative Society Ltd (ULCCS), said even the previous UDF government was in favour of it.

"As of now, passport related matters are handled by the Tata Consultancy Services (TCS). The database with regard to the passport matters are with that private company. The Union government has entered into a non-disclosure agreement with that company. We will also do the same with the Society," the Chief Minister told the House.

The Opposition created a ruckus over the alleged handover of police department database to the Kozhikode-based society.

The ULCCS will only have the authority to check whether there are any police cases registered against a person who had applied for passport, he said.

As a trial project, the ULCCS has been asked to handle 1,000 applications in Kochi city and Ernakulam rural police limits and generate reports on a trial basis.

Vijayan said the even as the software has been cleared by the Cyber Emergency Response Team, the highest independent and authorised body on cyber security in the country, adding the state was yet to finalise the purchase.

The Ministry of External Affairs, which runs the passport Sewa application for receiving passport applications, has welcomed the concept and has agreed in principle to link the new blockchain-based passport verification application with the passport sewa application.

Congress member K Sabarinath, who moved the notice, wanted the government to withdraw the access given to the Society and seize its hard drives.

"When the whole world is trying to secure data from being leaked, details under the Kerala police are being given to an organisation, which is close to the Left government," he alleged.

The member also questioned the government of the need for a new plan while there is an existing system in place for police verification.

While senior police officials of the district do not have access to the data, the government has given it to a society close to the Left government, he alleged.

The Congress has demanded an inquiry into the alleged breach of data security in the name of police verification for passport under the Kochi City and Ernakulam Rural police limits.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, November 13 2019. 19:35 IST