A five-judge constitutional bench of the Supreme Court is likely to hear a clutch of petitions challenging the Centre’s move to make Aadhaar mandatory to avail government schemes and welfare measures on Thursday. The Centre has maintained December 31, 2017, as the deadline by which Aadhaar is necessary to avail benefits, including government scholarships, subsidised LPG cylinders, farm loans and pension schemes.
The bench will hear the petitions at 2 pm on Thursday, reported news agency PTI. Earlier this month, the Centre had told the court that it would extend its deadline for mandatory linking till March 31, next year.
Aadhaar, a 12-digit unique identification number, is issued to each individual by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) after a person registers their demographic and biometric details with the body.
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On August 24, a nine-judge Constitution bench ruled that privacy is a fundamental right, subject to reasonable restrictions. It had observed, “The right to privacy is protected as an intrinsic part of the right to life and personal liberty under Article 21 and as a part of the freedoms guaranteed by Part III of the Constitution.” The verdict is likely to impact on the Aadhaar case before the five-judge bench.
(With inputs from PTI)