New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld the constitutional validity of Aadhaar and said it empowered marginalised sections of society. The apex court added that even though Aadhaar is unique and secure, it will not be compulsory to obtain services like mobile phone, banking and school admissions. Also Read - Supreme Court Rejects Plea Seeking 'Free And Fair' Elections in West Bengal
It further ruled that Aadhaar can be passed as a Money Bill and also observed that the data obtained by the Unique Identity Authority of India (UIDAI) should be minimal. Also Read - UPSC Prelims: Will Aspirants Get an Extra Attempt? Check Central Govt's Decision
Aadhaar verdict by Supreme Court: Top 10 points to be noted
- Aadhaar is constitutionally valid.
- It need not be made compulsory for school admissions. Aadhaar is also not mandatory for University Grants Commission (UGC), National Eligibility Entrance Test (NEET) and Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) examinations.
- Aadhaar is also not mandatory to obtain a new SIM card.
- It is compulsory for one to link their Permanent Account Number (PAN) with Aadhaar.
- Aadhaar is also not mandatory for the opening of a bank account.
- Supreme Court strikes down the section 57 of Aadhaar Act; as a result, private companies cannot ask for Aadhaar card.
- The Supreme Court said that the government needs to ensure that the unique identification proof empowers and gives identity to marginalised sections of the society.
- The SC asked Centre to “introduce strong data protection law as soon as possible”.
- Speaking on Aadhaar, the SC also observed that education has taken us from thumb impression to signature, now technology has taken us from signature to thumb impression.
- The apex court also added that Aadhaar number given to a person is unique and can’t go to any other person.
The Supreme Court also turned down the argument on exclusion, saying, “A lot of people who will benefit due to inclusion cannot be denied due to exclusion of few; we can’t throw the baby out with the bathwater.” Also Read - Sandalwood Drugs Case: Ragini Dwivedi Granted Bail by Supreme Court