The Supreme Court on Tuesday extended indefinitely the March 31 deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar to mobile phones, bank accounts, tatkal passports, etc, till it delivers its judgment on petitions challenging the constitutional validity of the Aadhaar Act.
A five-judge constitution bench headed by chief justice Dipak Misra had on 7 March said it may not be possible to decide by 31 March the batch of petitions challenging the constitutional validity of the Aadhaar Act.
The bench, which also comprised justices A.K. Sikri, A.M. Khanwilkar, D.Y. Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan, had earlier said that since the matter would have implications on financial institutions, like banks and stock exchange, it would create a huge problem of compliance if the deadline was extended at the last moment.
On 15 December last year, the apex court had extended till 31 March the deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar with various services and welfare schemes. Former Karnataka high court judge Justice K.S. Puttaswamy had told the apex court on 22 February that several deaths had reportedly taken place due to starvation on account of glitches in the Aadhaar-based public distribution system and the court must consider granting them compensation.
Know SC order in 5 points
1. The deadline for linking Aadhaar with mobile phones and bank accounts has been extended indefinitely
2. The SC said that its interim order will remain in force till further verdict
3. The apex court had last year extended the deadline to March 31
4. “The government cannot insist for mandatory Aadhaar even for issuance of Tatkal passport,” the Supreme Court said
5. However, has made it clear that Aadhaar will be required for subsidies and benefits under Section 7 of the Constitution