NEW DELHI: As the disappearance of the Assam National Register of Citizens (NRC) data from the official website triggered a panic, the Centre on Wednesday clarified that the data was safe even though some technical issues were visible and that would be resolved soon.
NRC State Coordinator Hitesh Dev Sarma said on Tuesday the data had been made offline and refuted the allegation of “malafide” intent.
The cloud service for the huge set of data was being provided by IT major Wipro, which said the authorities concerned did not renew the services contract for the project after it expired in October 2019. Sarma said the state coordination committee had decided to do necessary formalities in its meeting on January 30 and wrote to Wipro during the first week of February.
“Once Wipro makes the data live, it will be available for the public. We hope people will be able to access it in the next 2-3 days,” Sarma said. Tech policy consultant Prasanto K Roy told this newspaper there is no scope of any misuse or “malafide” intent. “
This is just a business decision from a company driven to the edge. The data still belongs to the government. Online access to the data may have disappeared, but can be restored once payments are made or the contract renewed. The onus is on the government to ensure business continuity, with sensitive applications of this sort, as long as the service provider is sticking to the agreement,” Roy said.
After a rigorous tender process, Wipro was appointed as the system integrator for the NRC project in Assam in 2014, the company said, in a statement, on Wednesday.
The Bengaluru-based company said it had continued to pay the hosting service fee until January end “as a gesture of goodwill” and that it is willing to continue providing these services if the agreement is renewed by the authorities.
The complete details about the NRC exercise in Assam were uploaded on the official website ‘www.nrcassam.nic.in’ after the final list was published on August 31, 2019. But the data went missing from the website a few days ago.