NSF opposes ‘One Nation, One Student ID’

Kohima, October 18 (MExN): The Naga Students' Federation (NSF) today declared its strong opposition to the recent announcement by the Union Education Ministry to introduce the Automated Permanent Academic Account Registry (APAAR), commonly referred to as the 'One Nation, One Student ID.'

“This controversial initiative is designed to create an Education Ecosystem Registry, also known as ‘EduLocker.’ The NSF believes that the APAAR poses significant challenges and concerns, undermining the rights and privacy of students and adding unnecessary burdens to educational institutions,” the Federation maintained in a statement.

The APAAR, proposed by the National Educational Technology Forum (NETF), is set to assign a unique identification number to every student enrolled from pre-primary to higher education, in addition to their existing Aadhaar ID.

While the Union Government touts this as a solution for seamless tracking of academic progress and achievements, it raises several concerns, the NST stated, citing Data Security and Administrative Burden, among others.

As per the NSF, ongoing concerns about data security and privacy breaches related to Aadhaar have not been adequately addressed.

“In a time when data breaches are all too common, adding another layer of data collection and storage without comprehensive security measures is worrisome,” contended the statement issued by the NSF President Medovi Rhi and Assistant General Secretary Kenilo Kent.

Further, it pointed out that educational institutions are already grappling with administrative burdens, including the optional Aadhaar verification of students.

“Introducing the APAAR registry would only add to the workload of teaching faculty and staff, potentially affecting the quality of education,” it added.

Additionally, the NSF expressed it firm belief that consent of parents for APAAR enrolment is insufficient to safeguard the rights and privacy of students.

The government's assurance that data will be shared only with concerned government agencies, while vague, does not eliminate the possibility of misuse or data breaches, it said.

Furthermore, a centrally functioning District Information for Education portal, as proposed, could become a potential target for cyber-attacks, endangering the personal information of students, it added.

Accordingly, the NSF called for a reconsideration of the APAAR initiative, taking into account these critical concerns.

It further urged the Union Education Ministry to prioritise data security, address administrative challenges, and engage in a comprehensive dialogue with all stakeholders, including students and educational institutions, to develop a more robust and privacy-conscious solution for tracking students' academic progress