Congress leader Jairam’s plea on Aadhaar Bill: Supreme Court seeks AG’s view

The Supreme Court Monday called for the Attorney General’s views on a PIL filed by Congress leader Jairam Ramesh, challenging the decision to treat Aadhaar Bill as a money bill.

Written by Utkarsh Anand | Published:April 26, 2016 4:45 am
Congress leader Jairam Ramesh during Idea Exchange. EXPRESS PHOTO BY PRAVEEN KHANNA 08 04 2015. Congress leader Jairam Ramesh (Express photo)

The Supreme Court Monday called for the Attorney General’s views on a PIL filed by Congress leader Jairam Ramesh, challenging the decision to treat Aadhaar Bill as a money bill. The Bill was passed during the Budget Session last month after overruling the amendments moved in the Rajya Sabha.

Ramesh had requested the top court to declare as null and unconstitutional the Aadhaar Act on the ground that it was wrongly introduced as a money bill and that the impugned Act requires the approval of both Houses since it contains provisions that impact the fundamental and Constitutional rights of citizens.

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“We will like to have the views of Attorney General (Mukul Rohtagi),” a bench led by Chief Justice T S Thakur said when senior advocate P Chidambaram sought issuance of notice on the plea of the Congress leader. Chidambaram contended that treating the Aadhaar Bill as a money bill was unconstitutional. The bench fixed the matter for hearing on May 10. However, it did not issue a notice on Ramesh’s plea on Monday.

Once the Lok Sabha passes a money bill ,with or without amendments recommended by the Rajya Sabha, it is deemed to have been passed by both the Houses. It is generally believed that the Speaker’s discretion is final in the matter.

But in his petition, Ramesh has said that Aadhaar cannot be a money bill under constitutional provisions since the Act contains many provisions that do not pertain to matters described as admissible under a money bill. He added that the introduction of the Act as a money bill is a brazen and malafide attempt to bypass the approval of the Rajya Sabha.

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