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SC upholds constitutional validity of Aadhaar; private entities can’t ask for Aadhaar details

September 27, 2018[2018] 97 taxmann.com 585 (SC)
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AADHAAR : The Aadhaar project does not tend to create a surveillance State. Such an apprehensions is assuaged with striking down or reading down or clarification of some of provisions

Aadhaar Constitutionally valid -The Aadhaar Act serves legitimate State interest and good governance to ensure fruits of welfare schemes (that involve 3% of GDP and, thus, huge of public money) reach to unprivileged and marginalized section of the society by preventing leakages, pilferages and corruption in the implementation of welfare schemes; it does not violate right to privacy, nor is it unconstitutional.

The Aadhaar Act meets the concept of Limited Government, Good Governance and Constitutional Trust.

Aadhaar Act as Money Bill valid - The Aadhaar Act is validly passed as a 'Money Bill' (within the meaning of Article 110 of the Constitution).

Aadhaar for students not mandatory - For admission of children in schools, requirement of Aadhaar would not be compulsory. Benefits to children under different student welfare schemes shall not require Aadhaar; identity may be proved on the basis of any other documents.

Inclusion of Aadhaar in Income-tax Act valid - Section 139AA of the Income Tax Act, 1961, pass the 'test of proportionality' (right to privacy v. legitimate State interest) and is, therefore, not unconstitutional.

Aadhaar-bank account linking invalid - Rule 9 of the Prevention of Money Laundering (Maintenance of Records) Rules, 2005 and the notifications issued thereunder which mandates linking of Aadhaar with bank accounts is fail test of proportionality; hence, unconstitutional.

Aadhaar-mobile linking invalid - Circular dated March 23, 2017 mandating linking of mobile number with Aadhaar is not backed by any law, hence, unconstitutional.

Certain Aadhaar provisions need amendment - Certain provisions of the Aadhaar Act and Regulations suffer from the vice of unconstitutionality and, hence, amendments were suggested.

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