Covid-19 should not become an excuse for creating the 'watchdog state': Tharoor in the Aarogya Setu app

NEW DELHI: The government making the Aarogya Setu mobile app mandatory for all employees raises serious questions about data protection, Congressional leader Shashi Tharoor said Monday, saying that Covid-19 should not become an excuse. for the creation of an Indian surveillance state.

The mobile application helps users identify if they are at risk of contracting the Covid-19 infection. It also provides people with important information, including ways to avoid and their symptoms.

The government requirement that the Aarogya Setu app is now mandatory for all employees, public or private, raises serious privacy and data protection issues. Covid-19 should not become an excuse for creating a 'surveillance state' in India, Tharoor tweeted. .

The central government has made it mandatory for all its employees to download the application and urged private individuals to also ask their employees to use it.

Tharoor's attack on the government came two days after congressional leader Rahul Gandhi said the Aarogya Setu mobile app is a sophisticated surveillance system outsourced to a private operator, raising serious concerns about the security of data and privacy.