Bengaluru, Aug 22 (PTI) The government is working towardstabling the data protection bill in the winter session of Parliament, Secretary in the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology Ajay Prakash Sawhney said on Thursday.

"Yes. Keep watching for that space. We are working towards that," he said when asked whether the data protection bill could be tabled in the winter session. He was speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the two-day event IoT India Congress-2019 here.

Terming it a seminal legislation, Sawhney said the government wants to get the law right because it needs to balance the imperative of data privacy and data protection as laid down by the Supreme Court. The emphasis is also on creating an ecosystem where innovation gets a boost, he added.

"So, how to, sort of, create a balance? How do we move forward with confidence? Which is why, I mentioned, apart from the legal framework, I alluded to the concept of public digital platforms. Public digital platforms play a huge role in creating trust," Sawhney said.

Compared to some huge economies where the digital payment system is controlled by a handful of companies, India preferred the UPI route allowing every company to participate based on the rules of engagement, according tohim.

"It's a public digital ecosystem, so anyone can join in. Anyone who thinks can do it better than these giants is freeto join in. How do you create an ecosystem which remains openfor newcomers, open for innovation? We need to replicatethat," Sawhney said.

To a question, he said the government never termed data protection as localisation of data but it preferred the responsible handling of data by adopting best practices adopted everywhere.

In this context, he said the guidelines laid down by theSupreme Court were the guiding force for the government.

"We have a broad guideline coming all the way from Supreme Court, which has considered data privacy as emanating from the fundamental rights in the country. So that is the law. Data privacy is the fundamental right," Sawhney explained. PTI GMS RS SS

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