SC Gets a Review Petition For Its Aadhar Verdict

New Delhi: The Supreme Court yesterday got a review petition for the verdict given by the Apex Court on the Centre’s flagship Aadhar scheme. This scheme was held constitutional on 26th September 2018 by 4:1 majority of a five judge bench lead by former Chief Justice of India Deepak Mishra.

One Imtiyaz Ali Palsaniya, filed the review petition along with an  interim application when the apex court was examining the validity of Aadhaar scheme. The petition has also sought an open court hearing in the matter. The petitioner has said it has been preferred in a “narrow compass” seeking to challenge only those aspects of the Aadhaar program as well as the Aadhaar Act, 2016 which were held to be constitutionally valid by the constitution bench.

While declaring the scheme as constitutionally valid, the apex court had struck down some of its provisions including its linking with bank accounts, mobile phones and school admissions.The constitution bench had held that Aadhaar would remain mandatory for filing of Income Tax returns and allotment of Permanent Account Number (PAN).”The judgement sought to be reviewed has also not considered a crucial aspect of PAN Aadhaar linkage, since it fails to satisfy the test laid down by the same court in the very same judgement,” the review plea said.

It claimed that the Aadhaar program, which had been in existence prior to the enactment of the Aadhaar Act, 2016, had itself become an “instrument of transfer of sensitive personal data” belonging to citizens to foreign entities acting as biometric service providers at a time when the UIDAI in 2010 had no cyber or technical infrastructure to store such information.

This, might lead to national security risk. According to a Press Information Bureau notification, 100 crore enrolments had already taken place before April 4, 2016. In its verdict, the apex court had said that Aadhaar 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 for medical entrance and the University Grants Commission.

The bench had also struck down the national security exception under the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016.Three sets of judgements were pronounced in the matter. The first one was pronounced by Justice A K Sikri who wrote the judgement for himself, Misra and Justice A M Khanwilkar.


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