New Delhi: Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Saturday said that the private entities could be allowed to use biometric ID Aadhaar by giving the private authorisation by contracts. Terming the Supreme Court verdict on Aadhaar as “very sound judgment”, Jaitley said that by holding its legality, the court accepted that there is a legitimate state aim in the biometric ID card. Also Read - Want to Make Online Appointment at Aadhaar Seva Kendra? Follow Step-by-step Guide Here
The court had struck down Section 57 of the Aadhaar Act that allows private entities to demand Aadhaar to access their services. Reacting to it, the Finance Minister said, “What had not been upheld falls in two categories. One is the principle of proportionality that Aadhaar will help in these cases and then do it by an appropriate law.” Also Read - Aadhaar Card Latest Update: Now You Can Change Address, Date of Birth And Important Details Online | Follow These Steps
“So the whole argument which was given that private companies can’t use it, there is Section 57 which says you can authorise others either by law or contract. So what has been struck down is by contract,” he said, adding, “By law it can still be done, provided you do it under the adequate provision of law and do it on the basis of that in this field it is necessary.” Also Read - Want to Link Aadhaar Card With PAN? Here’s How to do it From Your Phone | Details Here
Defending Aadhaar, Jaitley said that Aadhaar is not a citizenship card. He, however, didn’t explain if the government is planning to bring a law.
In a landmark judgment, the Supreme Court had on September 26 by a 4:1 majority judgment upheld the legality of Aadhaar for use only in government-funded social benefit schemes and PAN and Income Tax Return (ITR) while junking its requirement for mobile phone connections, bank accounts, school admissions, and competitive examinations.
The majority judgment, which struck and read down or clarified various provisions of the Aadhaar Act, was read out by Justice A.K. Sikri speaking for Chief Justice Misra and Justice A.M. Khanwilkar and himself. Justice Ashok Bhushan delivered a separate but concurring judgment.
Rejecting the apprehensions of the petitioners, the majority judgment held that the architecture of Aadhaar, as well as the provisions of the Aadhaar Act, do not tend to create a surveillance state. “This is ensured by the manner in which the Aadhaar project operates.” In his dissenting judgment, Justice D.Y. Chandrachud held that the entire Aadhaar programme since 2009 suffered from constitutional infirmities and violated fundamental rights.