Panel to study Sprinklr probe report

The State government has constituted a three-member committee to study the expert committee report that dwelt on the allegations raised in the public domain about the controversial contracting of the US-based firm, Sprinklr Inc for big data analysis to identify the pattern and potential spread of the contagion in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic in Kerala.

K. Sasidharan Nair, former District Judge and former Secretary, Law Department, will chair the committee.

A. Vinaya Babu, a retired professor of computer science and technology, JNTUH College of Engineering, Hyderabad; and Sumesh Divakaran, professor, computer science and technology, College of Engineering, Thiruvananthapuram, are the other members.

The report

A committee headed by former Civil Aviation Secretary and Special Secretary, Information Technology, M. Madhavan Nambiar, and Gulshan Rai, former Cyber Security Coordinator, Government of India, had examined the matter and submitted a report that pointed to some procedural errors in selecting the firm.

The committee had also suggested measures to strengthen the State’s Information Technology Department and improve its understanding, selection and implementation of data analytics and other high-value digital platforms.

However, the government felt a detailed examination was necessary on various aspects on which the Madhavan Nambiar committee had not offered its comments.

Panel’s aim

The new committee headed by Mr. Nair would examine whether officials who engaged the firm had observed the procedures laid down in the rules of business of the State government. The new committee will also investigate whether the officials had followed law while signing the purchase order and agreement with Sprinklr Inc.

The government also wanted the committee to examine whether the extraordinary circumstances and exigencies caused by the advent of the pandemic would justify the lapses on the part of officials intent on harnessing the power of big data analysis to predict the spread and potency of the disease and also identify vulnerable sections of the population.

The government also wanted the committee to find out how the administration could have ensured data security in the face of the emergency caused by the looming public health crisis. The government has stipulated February as the deadline for the committee to submit its findings.

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2021 2:05:40 PM |

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