Accepted paper:

Citizenship by design: Aadhar, NRC and the immigrant

Authors:

Khetrimayum Monish Singh (Jawaharlal Nehru University)

Paper short abstract:

Taking STS perspectives, this paper will focus on the UID/ Aadhar Project and the NRC (National Register of Citizens) update in Assam (India), and analyze these digital infrastructures and their role in technological categorizations of the subject/ citizen.

Paper long abstract:

Infrastructures based on the aggregation and categorization of individuals such as the UID/ Aadhar and the NRC (National Register of Citizens) in Assam (India), is what one could call 'technology as politics'. These projects, including e-governance initiatives, rural internet and emphasis on mobile internet services, are ways through which the logic of access and participation now increasingly operates. However, these infrastructures that have emerged on the political landscape are also deeply exclusionary and based on differential treatment; and has created new technological categorizations of the citizen as well as the subject. While digital practices have ruptured the ideas of rights, access, benefits and citizenship, it has also reconsolidated the idea of the subject based on the mobility of the body aggregated through information and data. Subsequently, these interventions also influence complex processes of citizen-making, which are often historical, socio-cultural and demographic specific, as in the case of Assam. Digital infrastructures have normalized and legitimized these technological categorizations, and wired it into various governmental rationalities. Taking STS perspectives, this paper will focus on the UID/ Aadhar Project and the NRC (National Register of Citizens) update in Assam (India), and analyze these digital infrastructures and their role in technological categorizations of the subject/ citizen.

panel T085
Infrastructures, subjects, politics