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National News

Jul 05, 2019

SC seeks reply from Centre, UIDAI on plea challenging 2019 Aadhaar Ordinance

File Pic: PTI
The Supreme Court today asked the Centre and the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) to respond to a petition which has challenged the validity of the 2019 Aadhaar Ordinance. 

A bench of Justices S A Bobde and B R Gavai issued notices to them on a PIL challenging the validity of Aadhaar and Other Laws (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019 and Aadhaar (Pricing of Aadhaar Authentication Services) Regulations, 2019. 

The Ordinance was published in the Gazette of India in March 2019.

The petitioners - a retired Army officer and human rights activist -- have alleged in their plea that the Ordinance and the regulations violate the fundamental rights of the citizens guaranteed under the Constitution. 

The PIL claimed that the impugned Ordinance creates a backdoor to permit private parties to access the Aadhaar ecosystem. The PIL said this enables state and private surveillance of citizens and the impugned regulations permit the commercial exploitation of personal and sensitive information which has been collected and stored for state purposes only. 

It has sought a direction to declare that private entities, which have access to the Aadhaar database, are under a public duty to ensure that Aadhaar numbers and available data are not stored by them.

On 26th September last year, a five-judge Constitution bench of the apex court had declared the Centre's flagship Aadhaar scheme as constitutionally valid. The bench had, however, struck down some of its provisions including its linking with bank accounts, mobile phones and school admissions.

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