Centre had to funrnished a clarification regarding the creators of Aarogya Setu application after a Right to Information query on the topic received evasive replies from the government. While the application's website claims that it was developed by National Informatics Centre and the Information Technology Ministry, both denied knowledge of who created it in response to an RTI query. Following this development, Central Information Commission had ordered CPIOs of MeitY, NeGD and NIC to appear before it on November 24.
"As was announced through Press Releases and Social Media posts on April 2, 2020, Aarogya Setu App was launched by Government of India in public private partnership mode to bring people of India together in its fight against COVID-19," Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) said in a statement on Wednesday.
The Aarogya Setu application was released as a contact tracing tracing application amid the coronavirus pandemic. Since its launch, it has been widely promoted by the Centre, with government and private institutions being exhorted to popularise its use among their employees.
"The Aarogya Setu App was developed in a record time of around 21 days, to respond to the exigencies of the pandemic with lockdown restrictions only for the objective of building a Made in India contact tracing app with the best of Indian minds from industry, academia and government, working round the clock to build a robust, scalable and secure app. Since April 2, 2020, regular press releases and updates have been issued on Aarogya Setu App including making the source code available in Open domain on 26th May 2020," the ministry further said.
In its statement, the ministry also shared a GitHub link that contains the names of all those associated with the development of the Aarogya Setu app and management of the app ecosystem at various stages. These names were shared when the code was released in public domain and have been widely disseminated in media also, the IT Ministry said.
As per government estimates, Aarogya Setu app has been downloaded by more than 16.23 crore users across the country.