SC verdict Aadhar is not mandatory for bank account mobile connection

Governance       What will Supreme Court do with Aadhaar? Here are 3 possible scenarios
       	        Apurva Vishwanath         25 September 2018

Governance What will Supreme Court do with Aadhaar? Here are 3 possible scenarios Apurva Vishwanath 25 September 2018

A five-judge Constitution Bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra had then directed all parties concerned to file their written submissions to put forth their case. Until now, banks and telephone companies had been pushing customers to link their Aadhaar.

"The Supreme Court has upheld the constitutional validity of Aadhaar and has also said that it does not violate privacy", Mr. Patra said. It is clear that Aadhaar would be a biometric identity proof only and that too not mandatory for private entities to use and so not compulsory for citizens to furnish. "Original intent of UPA, i.e., to give identity to the marginalised people now shines (sic)", he said.

Supreme Court has also struck down the need of Aadhaar card from admissions in school.

According to Section 139AA of Income Tax Act, every person who is eligible to obtain an Aadhaar number shall quote Aadhaar number in the application form for allotment of the permanent account number (PAN) and in the return of income.

The bench, also comprising of D Y Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan, had on May 10 reserved its judgment on a string of writ petitions, pending since 2012, challenging the constitutionality of the Aadhaar Act, bringing to a conclusion which, in the words of Attorney General KK Venugopal, was the second-longest hearing in the history of the apex court. Noting that mobile phone has become an important feature of life and its seeding with Aadhaar posed a grave threat to privacy, liberty, autonomy, he favoured deletion of consumers' Aadhaar data by the mobile service providers. "Aadhaar identification is unparalleled", Justice Sikri, who has authored the judgment on behalf of himself, CJI Dipak Misra and Justice AM Khanwilkar, said in opening remarks.

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There is a fundamental difference between Aadhaar and other identity proof as Aadhaar can not be duplicated and it is a unique identification. However, he "personally" appreciated Justice DY Chandrachud's minority judgment, striking it down on the ground that it violates a citizen's Right to Privacy, which was pronounced as a fundamental right under Article 21 of the Indian Constitution previous year.

"SC strikes down section 57 of Aadhaar Act, 2016".

It would not be mandatory for school admissions, as also for the examinations conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Examination, National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) for medical entrance and the University Grants Commission. The verdict has also exposed the Congress, he claimed.

Media have reported several cases of Aadhaar breaches, but Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), which manages the programme, and other supporters, argue the system is foolproof and secure.

Over one billion Indians have already signed up for Aadhaar.

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