UPDATES: Aadhaar verdict today - Mobile number, Bank account linking not compulsory; Mandatory for PAN, says SC
Aadhaar verdict Updates: The Supreme Court today is set to pronounce its crucial verdict on a batch of pleas challenging the constitutional validity of Centre's flagship Aadhaar scheme and its enabling 2016 law
Aadhaar verdict Updates: The Supreme Court today is pronouncing its crucial verdict on a batch of pleas challenging the constitutional validity of Centre's flagship Aadhaar scheme and its enabling 2016 law. A five-judge constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra had on May 10 reserved the verdict on the matter after a marathon hearing that went on for 38 days, spanning four-and-half months. As many as 31 petitions, including one by former High Court judge K S Puttaswamy, have been filed in the matter. When the judgement was reserved by the court, Attorney General K K Venugopal had told the bench, which also comprised Justices A K Sikri, A M Khanwilkar, D Y Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan, that this matter had become the "second longest" one in terms of days of hearing after the historic Kesavananda Bharati case of 1973
The Supreme Court judgement assumes significance as it would decide whether Aadhaar should a free for all use. Should Private operators be allowed to make Aadhaar for mobile numbers? Should it be compulsory to link bank accounts with Aadhaar number? There are many such important questions that the verdict today will settle.
Here are the updates on Supreme Court Aadhaar verdict:
- Supreme Court strikes down the section 57 of Aadhaar Act; as a result, private companies cannot ask for Aadhaar card.
- Aadhaar mandatory for filing of IT returns and allotment of Permanent Account Number, says SC.
- Aadhaar card is mandatory for PAN linking
- Aadhaar is not mandatory for UGC, NEET & CBSE examinations. Biometric data shall not be shared with any agency without the permission of the court.
- No mobile company can demand "Aadhaar card".
- "The government needs to ensure that illegal migrants do not get Aadhaar card"
- Reports quote the SC as saying that Mobile number, Bank account linking with Aadhaar not compulsory!
- ANI reports, "Supreme Court upholds constitutional validity of Aadhaar." The SC says, "Education has taken us from thumb impression to signature, now technology has taken us from signature to thumb impression"
- CBSE, UGC cannot ask for Aadhaar for examinations, SC said. Aadhaar should not be compulsory for enrolment to schools. No child should be denied benefits if they don't possess.
- Justice AK Sikri asks Centre to "introduce strong data protection law as soon as possible"
- Supreme Court says, "Minimal demographic and biometric data of citizens are collected by the UIDAI for Aadhaar enrolment. Aadhaar number given to a person is unique and can't go to any other person"
- Justice AK Sikri: "Aadhaar empowers the marginalised section of the society and gives them an identity, Aadhaar is also different from other ID proofs as it can't be duplicated".
- Justice AK Sikri: Says, "It is better to be unique than to be best".
- Justice AK Sikri has authored the judgement on behalf of him, CJI and Justice Khanwilkar. Justice Chandrachud and Justice A Bhushan have written their individual opinions
- Supreme Court Justice Sikri while reading out verdict on constitutional validity of Aadhaar says: "There is a fundamental difference between Aadhaar card and identity. Once the bio-metric information is stored, it remains in the system"
During the arguments, the Centre had strongly defended its decision to seed Aadhaar numbers with mobile phones, telling the top court that it could have been hauled up for contempt if the verification of mobile users was not undertaken by it. The counsel for one of the petitioners had termed Aadhaar as "an electronic leash" and said that the government could completely destroy an individual by "switching off" the 12-digit unique identifier number. On the other hand, the Centre had said that the law was valid and allowed the minimal invasion to ensure the right to life of millions of Indians by ensuring seamless delivery of subsidies, benefits, and services to the poorest of poor.
(With agency inputs)