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अंग्रेज़ी सीखने का अवसर (कक्षा प्रारंभ : 5 अक्तूबर, शाम 6 से 8)
Aadhaar Not Mandatory for Availing Government Benefits
Mar 18, 2015

The Supreme Court has reiterated an earlier order with regards to the Aadhaar card, directing the Centre and states to ensure that no person is denied benefits for not having the same.

Key Points

  • The court said it expects the government to adhere to the order dated September 23, 2013.

  • The court said that no person should suffer through lack of the Aadhaar card, despite the issuing of a circular that made the card mandatory.

  • The bench in its interim order had said that the Aadhaar card be not made mandatory for people for availing any government services and nobody should be deprived of any such facilities for the want of the card.

  • The demands made by officials for Aadhaar card is in clear violation of the Supreme Court's interim order.

  • The court said we expect the Union of India and all the States to adhere to the order dated September 23, 2013. We will take the officers concerned to task if any order comes on record making Aadhaar mandatory

  • The Apex court had in October 2013 refused to make Aadhaar card compulsory for availing social benefits.

  • The court's dismissal of Aadhaar card's validity comes at a time when over 750 million Aadhar numbers have already been generated.

  • The NCT government issued a notification on March 9, 2015, insisting that couples require Aadhaar cards to get their marriage registered under the Special Marriage Act.

  • The Bombay High Court Registrar had recently received an official communication asking him to make Aadhar mandatory for disbursal of salary to staff and even judges.

  • It was announced in the Union Budget 2015-16 that the DBT scheme would be further expanded to cover more schemes and residents. So far, around 800 million residents have been given Aadhaar and the entire country is expected to be covered by this June.

The court was hearing a batch of petitions challenging the Aadhaar unique identity scheme for all citizens in the country. There are about a dozen public interest petitions pending for two years arguing the scheme was unconstitutional as the right to privacy of citizens has been curtailed by the information in the hands of the authorities. This information can be acquired by other entities and misused, the petitions allege. 

However, the government has taken the stand that there was no such violation and the scheme would weed out illegal immigration, help streamline distribution of essential goods to the poor and eliminate ghost names in the voters list. 

The latest order is an interim one with the court continuing to hear further arguments on the issue of constitutional validity and privacy concerns around Aadhaar. The government is not forcing anybody to give Aadhaar. In most cases, people are themselves coming forward to list their numbers since they find value in using it  

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