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Tuesday, December 07, 2021

Aadhaar meant for tracking PDS, not prying into activities of others: Kapil Sibal in Rajya Sabha

Kapil Sibal reminded the House that when the BJP was in opposition it staunchly opposed the Aadhaar scheme.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: March 29, 2017 5:01:09 pm
congress, pm narendra modi, pm modi, narendra modi, prime minister modi, modi mukt parliament, kapil sibal, congress spokesperson, india news Congress member Kapil Sibal speaks in the Rajya Sabha. (file photo)

Expressing displeasure over making Aadhaar mandatory for filing tax returns and linking it to the PAN card, senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal, speaking in the Rajya Sabha on Monday, said the Government has violated the Supreme Court orders and has sought an explanation from Finance Minister Arun Jaitley over the issue. Saying that this would have “huge consequences”, Sibal claimed that Aadhaar data can be hacked and be used to make bank transactions. “Banking transactions can be hacked, can track people using travel records, when the Pentagon can be hacked why can’t this be?” Sibal said.

Sibal explained that under the UPA government, the purpose of rolling out the Aadhaar was to ensure that the government schemes would reach the targeted people. “Aadhaar was only meant for PDS, targeted subsidies should reach the people. That is purpose of Aadhaar, not for you to pry into the activities of others,” he said. Sibal claimed that “we are living in a police state”.

He reminded the House that when the BJP was in opposition it staunchly opposed the Unique Identification (UID) scheme, but are now trying to foist it on the public. “One of your stalwarts claimed that Aadhaar is the biggest fraud in history. Then why are you perpetuating that fraud on us, sir? ,” he said.

Questioning the Finance Ministry’s move to link Aadhaar with I-T filing and PAN cards, Sibal said they were being “disrespectful to the Supreme Court”. “You have to answer this as to why you have done this, and why you have been so disrespectful of the Supreme Court orders,” he said. “Your explanation can only be the arrogance of power.”

He also questioned the way 40 amendments were added to The Finance Bill, which is a money and does not require the approval of the Upper House. “You will go down in history as those who muffle the voice of this House,” he said.

Earlier today, the Supreme Court reiterated that the government cannot make Aadhaar mandatory for availing government welfare schemes. The apex court, however, said that it cannot stop the government from using the UID for other activities such as filing tax returns and purchasing a sim card.


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