As the deadlines to link Aadhaar Card with vital services grows across the country, the Supreme Court needs to act fast. The Supreme Court has not yet taken a firm decision in this regard. Earlier, the case has been scheduled for a hearing in early November and then in November last week. There is no fixed date of hearing for the main Aadhaar challenge or the petition for interim relief. The government has given a deadline of December 31 for linking Aadhar number to bank accounts.
The government might move the deadline to link Aadhaar to bank accounts and other services to March 31. However, there is the possibility that government may postpone the deadline for only those who don’t have Aadhar. Earlier, on August 11, 2015, the Supreme Court ruled that the Aadhaar Card number is optional and not mandatory. The Court said that It would be used for public distribution and LPG schemes but it is not mandatory.
Aadhaar number affects Privacy of Citizens
Earlier, this year the question of privacy also arose in case of linking Aadhar number to services. Supreme Court ruled that right to privacy is fundamental but remained silent on how Aadhar would affect the privacy of citizens. As the government is spreading the ambit of Aadhaar, it is taking advantage of the slow pace of legal proceedings. The government notified the Aadhar Act in March 2016. The government has asked the citizens to link Aadhaar to bank accounts, phone numbers, pan cards and insurance policies.
Linking Aadhar number to vital services
Many states have already made Aadhaar mandatory for vital services like food ration & mid-day meal schemes. It has been made mandatory regardless of what the Supreme Court said in this matter. Almost all the citizens are receiving messages to link their UID number with their bank accounts and mobile numbers. Those who don’t have an Aadhaar number are rushing to Aadhar centres to apply for the same. Citizens having UID number are going to link their phone numbers and accounts to Aadhar. This is also creating panic about privacy and security among the citizens. The panic is working on adding more people to the Aahaar network. This also creates the impression that Aadhar linking scheme is imposed on citizens without their consent.