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Data Governance, Sovereignty and Surveillance to Dominate Tech Policy Debate in India

Data Governance, Sovereignty and Surveillance to Dominate Tech Policy Debate in India

The War between Indian and foreign technology companies will be intensifying according to the policymakers. This is due to the Intermediary Liability, digital taxation, data governance, government surveillance and more will be dominating the debate on tech policymaking in India. This is initiated for the run-up in general elections that will be happening this year. Major tech companies such as Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Twitter will be highly affected as they will be facing greater tax scrutiny and may also be forced to host Indian users’ data.

At the same time, the Indian companies such as Paytm, Reliance Jio and more will be aiming to support some of these tighter guidelines so that it might give them a level – playing field. “2019 will see a dynamic shift in the tech policy due to multiple issues covering the change in the regulatory framework for the protection of personal data, intermediary liability and powers of government surveillance of the internet in view of encryption technology,” says TejasKaria, who is a partner at ShardulAmarchandMangaldas, (law firm).

Taxation is another issue that may catch momentum because most of the foreign companies who provide digital services are escaping the Indian tax net because they don’t have a corporate office in India. “Taxation of digital services will be an issue and we’re also seeing elements of this come up in other regulations. For example, the requirement to set up an Indian entity under the proposed amendment to the intermediary’s rules creates a permanent establishment for the purpose of tax law,” says NehaaChaudhari, who is the public policy lead at Ikigai Law.


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