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Congress opposing DNA Bill ridiculous

Congress opposing DNA Bill ridiculous
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Congress opposing DNA Bill ridiculous

Highlights

Rational irrationality is not doublethink and does not state that the individual deliberately chooses to believe something he or she knows to be false

Rational irrationality is not doublethink and does not state that the individual deliberately chooses to believe something he or she knows to be false. Rather, the theory is that when the costs of having erroneous beliefs are low, people relax their intellectual standards and allow themselves to be more easily influenced by fallacious reasoning, cognitive biases, and emotional appeals.

In other words, people do not deliberately seek to believe false things but stop putting in the intellectual effort to be open to evidence that may contradict their beliefs. Sadly, the Opposition in our country is going through this phase now. One of the latest flashpoints seems to be over the DNA Technology (Use and Application) Regulation Bill 2019. It had called upon the government to drop it.

DNA profiling and fingerprinting came into use around three decades ago and since then it has grown widely and has been of tremendous help in cracking several criminal and civil cases. It has been a useful tool in law enforcement as it works both ways, vis securing correct convictions and also exonerating the innocent. Furthermore, DNA fingerprinting, unlike other forensic evidence, can be collected easily and sustains for long thereby increasing chances of accurate analysis by manifold.

Agreed that it has two sides to it, the darker and gloomier side being the misuse of the data so obtained which can result in huge damage to the individual and to the society as a whole. This brings us to the question, how important it is to regulate the said technology and streamline its usage only for the benefit and betterment of society and how it can be done. With a technology with extensive usage such as this one, regulation cannot be merely done by making changes to the existing law, rather it requires to be controlled and dealt with by a special law.

This question was taken up by Parliament through the Department of Biotechnology, when it came up with 'The Use and Regulation of DNA-based Technology in Civil and Criminal Proceedings, Identification of Missing Persons and Human Remains Bill, 2016'. Parliament forwarded the Bill to the Law Commission of India and it was edited and redrafted as "The DNA Technology (Use and Regulation) Bill, 2017". The Bill has been passed in the Lok Sabha and is awaiting for the Rajya Sabha's confirmation and the Presidential assent.

The fact that the Bill has been passed itself is proof that it has been debated (if not, the Opposition must have felt it was not worthwhile to do so). The technology is necessary not only for civil and criminal cases but also in the research to cure genetic defects.

Its usage will only grow in future. The Constitution under Article 51A(h) and (j) casts duty upon the citizens to develop scientific temper, humanism and the spirit of inquiry and reform to strive towards excellence in individual and collective activity and thereby the Parliament can legitimately undertake and promote technical and scientific methods to expedite the criminal justice system as provided under the Union List. Why oppose a move to modernise the society for greater good?

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