The deadline for Aadhaar linking has been extended indefinitely. The previous deadline was 31st March. Linking Aadhaar will allow people to avail certain purposes. This includes services such as opening bank accounts, tatkal passports, mobile phones, etc.
The bench led by Chief Justice Misra said that the Supreme Court should stop issuing interim orders to extend deadlines for linking Aadhaar to various services. It was mentioned that citizens shouldn’t feel like their services are being curtailed because of the Aadhaar scheme. The only thing the court found that the Aadhaar should function is for distributing subsidies. The extension will be in place till the court delivers the final judgement.
The bench is hearing cases against the whole Adhaar scheme itself. On December 15th, 2017 the court had extended the deadline for linking to March 31st. The centre has also been refusing to issue passports under Tatkal without the Aadhaar. This is a violation of the interim order passed. The case Vrinda Grover was being presented by lawyer KK Venugopal. In the previous hearing, the Centre was ordered by the Supreme Court to announce the extension so as not to disrupt the banking and financial system. The Aadhaar scheme is facing challenges as a threat to privacy and encroachment on a citizen’s identity.
As per Section 7 of the Aadhaar Act, 2016, says that any government, “For the purpose of establishing identity of an individual as a coalition for receipt of a subsidy, benefit or service for which the expenditure is incurred from, or the receipt there-from forms part of, the Consolidated Fund of India, require that such individual undergo authentication, or furnish proof of possession of Aadhaar number or in the case of an individual to whom no Adhaar number has been assigned, such individual makes an application for enrolment: provided that if an Aadhaar number is not assigned to an individual, the indivdual shall be offered alternate and viable means of identification for delivery of the subsidy, benefit or service.”