Rachna Khaira, who wrote for The Tribune, has bagged the prestigious RedInk Award for ‘Journalist of the Year’ for her far-reaching expose during Calendar 2018 on the functioning of the Unique Identification Authority of Indian (UIDAI) and its Aadhar data cache. Her investigation confirmed that personal data of millions of citizens was at risk of being hacked or traded for a price. By running a series of stings with The Huffington Post, the journalist was able to raise serious doubts about the claims by government that Aadhar data stored in UIDAI servers was safe and secure.
Many of the leads provided by Ms Khaira become part of public interest litigation (PIL), which finally led to the onerous and mandatory aspects of Aadhar being watered down.
However, instead of complimenting the journalist for having brought to light the deficiencies of the system, and the threat posed to the privacy of the citizen, the UIDAI launched police action against Rachna Khaira, her editor Harish Khare, and the newspaper The Tribune.