Aadhaar deadline extended indefinitely; Govt Can't force mandatory Aadhaar linkage until next judgement
A bench of five judges, headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Mishra on Tuesday said that the government cannot insist for mandatory Aadhaar till the matter is under judicial consideration.
The Supreme Court of India on Tuesday has extended mandatory Aadhaar linking with bank accounts and mobile phones and passports indefinitely till the judgement is pronounced. The earlier deadline which was set on March 31st, has now been cancelled.
The top court said that a biometric ID is mandatory for accessing social welfare schemes and subsidies, but till it decides on whether the government's demand for Aadhaar to be linked to private and public services is a violation of the right to privacy, the 12-digit unique number given to each citizen does not have to be linked to other services.
In January, Aadhaar was made mandatory not only for the renewal of passport, but also for new passports issued within three days under the tatkaal category - an order that has been challenged by activist Vrinda Grover.
On December 15 last year, the apex court had extended till March 31 the deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar with various services and welfare schemes.
Some petitioners in the top court have termed the linking of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) number with bank accounts and mobile numbers as "illegal and unconstitutional".