Type: Process Essays
Sample donated: Debbie Bishop
Last updated: July 17, 2019
Aadhar card is a 12 digitidentification number issued by the the concerned authority on behalf of thegovernment of india. This number, also knownas Unique Identity Number (UID), is linked with a number of demographic andbiometric details. Any individual, of any age and gender, who is a resident ofIndia, may by its own will and choice enrol to obtain Aadhaar number.
Aadhaarcard comprises of some important features such as name of the individual,Father/Mother’s name, Date of Birth, Sex, address of the individual andbiometric features such as photograph, fingerprints and iris (eye) details. Issueshave arose that the government and agencies denies benefits to the consumers ifadhaar not produced to them. Apart from the issues with the establishment ofadhaar various new things catering to the society has cropped up allowed thegovernment to directly transfer social benefits to the person under variousschemes,people who have been socially excluded now by having a aadhar canaccess various social benefits too. There has been a very wide controversy onadhaar in relation to hampering/violating the right to privacy of theindividual for the simple reason for not having any formalstatute/legislation.The UIDAI is also not responsible to the parliament ifthere is a failurein the system.There are so many private people who haveengaged themselves in issuing adhaar even before the data base goes to theCIDR.
The threat to right to privacy was that the UIDAI can share the biometricinformation of the citizens with the other government agencies .It was alsoassumed that by usage of biometric data ,individuals can be tracked, harassedetc. The Aadhaar (TargetedDelivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Bill, 2016was passed by the Lok Sabha. Subsequently the Bill was returned by the RajyaSabha with five key amendments, but these were not taken into consideration andtherefore Lok sabha passed it as a Money Bill. TheAadhaar bill basically plans to use the identification number issued by theUnique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) to provide subsidies of thestate directly to the beneficiaries.
The government has now made obligatory forevery citizen of india to have an aadhar card and also provided a preconditionof providing services or social benefits after fulfilment for the same thiscondition was not mandatory earlier when the Aadhar bill of 2016 was passed.SCOPE OF AADHARThe objective is to showthe ambit and advantages of linking Aadhaar card to various systems. The governmentof India has attatched the Aadhaar card with various schemes/services like subsidies given forcooking gas, providing scholarship for schools, passports, bank accounts under thescheme of PMJDY (Prandhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana), provident funds account,pensions, driving license, insurance policies, waiving loans etc. The list doesnot end here for linking of aadhar with the important services of thegovernment there are many more like it has made obligatory for ATM CashTransaction, reservation of railways, applying for PAN (Permanent Account Number)card, and filing income tax returns, mobile sim etc.
The recent news suggestedthat UGC (University Grants Commission) made mandatory in the universities toinclude a photograph and seed the 12 digit Aadhaar number on the mark sheet aswell as on the certificates to bring consistency and transparency. Let usdicuss the schemes of the government and importance of those schemes to thecitizens whether it has caused hindrance or rather violated the right toprivacy of the citizens or has proved to be useful by prevention corruption.a) Indian railwaysIndia is one of the bestwith regard to transportation where almost million of passengers in indiatravel by railways to various destinations situated in india. So in thisscenario the government is trying to provide the best possible means of comfortand facilities to the individuals. Recently discussions have been in talk forintroducing or establishment of bullet trains which provide faster mode of travelwith ofcourse less time needed.
Earlier an individual had to go to the railwayscounters for any mode of support be it reservation or enquiry but with theintroduction of advanced technologies an individual can directly book thetickets by sitting at home via online procedures and through there authorisedgovernment site called IRTC(Indian railways tourism and corporation ltd).Themost important concer via filling up the particulars of the form forreservation of the ticket the individual has to fill up details like name,address, date of birth, mobile number, email id etc. etc and then the personcan either get a print out of the same or getting an sms for the same too. Butthe most glaring factor of an hour is anyone can misuse this type of facilitythey can misuse the mobile number of the person for fraudently travelling freeof cost how would a person be identified in this manner so the government hasbasically now taken an initiative to enter the 12 digit number on the aadhaarcard which on the trial basis for 3 months and also show the aadhar to theconcerned checking authority along with the sms received.
But this is notenough to prevent the fraudent acts of the individuals for more security someof the more initiatives would be taken on the platform by the government forthe same.Linking of aadhar withbank accountsAs we are aware of the socalled fact that linking or obtaining of aadhar was not at all mandatory butnow the scenario is way more different the government has made it compulsoryfor all the individuals to link there 12 digit aadhar number with their bankaccount if not linked the account woukld be treated as invalid a strict ruleindeed this is done to curb the opening infinite number of accounts with thepurpose of depositing n number of cash with any enquiry as to from where thehuge some of money is coming from. Speaking from personal experience as a lawstudent while i was doing my internship there was a person who had 14 bankaccounts and each account with a different name and with huge some of money.Now the most glaring factor is from where the money is coming the business doesnot give so much of returns so by assumption it is a black money or the personis involved in some illegal business. So to curb such fraudulent acts of thepeople the linking of aadhar will allow the government to inquire into theoccupation of the person to know how much returns the person is getting andalso will help to know the number of accounts of the person which he/she hasopened in various other banks.
Cooking gasEarlier as we know thatlinking of aadhar was not mandatory to obtain subsidies for the same by thecitizens but government in the recent sceanario has made compulsory to providecertain incentives on cooking gas for the household by proving subsidies forthe same. And for this reason in order to obtain this linking of aadhar is animportant creiteria and the procedure for providing subsidies would directly gointo the banks of the concerned person in their account which would lead toless practice of fraudulent means. PDS (Public Distribution System) PDS (Public DistributionSystem) was implemented in India in 1965 for the poor people who can have thefood delivered at a low cost or free of cost.
In fact the government bought thefood grains from the farmer at a procurement price and sell the food grainsthrough the PDS. In 1997, the universal PDS system (where each and every onewas eligible, even rich people can opt for PDS for low cost food grains) wasabolished, and the entire country was divided into two parts, APL (AbovePoverty Line) and BPL (Below Poverty Line). Now, only BPL citizens are onlyallowed to have an access to the PDS at low or free of cost 26. Recently thegovernment has linked Aadhaar card with the PDS system to overcome the frauds.
The major reason to implement Aadhaar based PDS system is that there wereincrease in the number of ‘Rice Mafia’, people who just use the rice from thegovernment using fake ID’s and sell it outside to someone else for profit 27.It is to be noticed that in previous PDS, each citizen with ration card wereallotted with specific FPS (Fair Price Shop) or ration shops. However linkingof Aadhaar card provides the access of any nearby FSP’s or Ration ShopsMaking aadhar mandatoryfor the passengers travelling via airThe Times of India in itsreport stated in the year 2017 that next year that is 2018 that airportsauthority of india(aai) will implement the government programme that is DIGIYATRA as one of the most important project in coming year of 2018 frombasically three airports as per report stating that is Kolkata, ahmedabad andVijayawada and then would implement in other vairports of the cities.in thissystem of linking aadhar flyers have to use the biometrics in order to provetheir identity in order to enter the terminal in this way their Aadhaar-linked airline database will showwhich flight they haved booked and also linked airport databases will show theyhave been security screened and allowed access to boarding gate closer to theflight departure time. These three steps would subsequently exclude the need toshow paper ID cards, paper tickets and boarding cards. AAI chairman said that this solution provides the passenger anoption to enter aadhar number while booking the tickets.
Linking of mobile numberwith aadhar card.As we all know thatearlier before making the aadhar card linkage mandatory there are millions ofpeople in the country like india would had access to buying of the new sim byshowing very lenient documents without any problem. So ofcourse by ststing theabove facts people would and did ofcourse indulged in the so calledimpersonation, misuse of the number with an illegal intention to fraud anyone.But as we all know the government of the country would not see this mishaphappening quietly had played a very smart move by linking the aadhar card withthe mobile numbers of the person so thst it can easily trace the true identityof the individual if some mishap happens for that matter.Protection of data andright to privacyLoopholes attached toaadhar card as linking it with various services of the governmentAadhar Card has been ahighlighted news recently for a lot ofcontroversial reasons.many aadhar card holders feel that the compulsory policylaunched by the government that basically asked Indian citizens to link theiraadhar card number with their bank accounts and PAN Card was a direct violationof their Legislative Right to Privacy.The loopholes in theaadhar card are as followsMISUSE OF bank detailsAs aadhar makesobligatory for the Indians to link theirbank account with the aadhar card, it can lead to some serious problem, ifusers bank details are not protected and leaked or misused in any of the ways COMPROMISING with theright to privacy of the citizens. Aadharholds bio-metric data and residential information of each individual in thecountry.
Now according to the governmentrules, the information is linked with the bank accounts of all the individuals including voter Id, PAN card etc. Assumption is made ifall the users information is leaked orused for improper purposes by thegovernment. We will not be able to refuse that majority of the Government officers are corrupt and won’tmind manipulating the individual information for some extra income.Not an easy process touse/the usage is uneasyMore than 30% populationin india is not educated, and because of illetracy it is difficult for them tounderstand or operate properly by usingan aadhar card. As we all know a country like india which is a developing oneofcourse comprises of several rural areas where aadhar card centers or offices are notestablished. Not allowing these ruralpeople from having an identity proofThere have been multiplecases come up in which implementing aadhar had faced problems. The main purpose is to discuss the cases.According to The Times of India there was acontroversy on aadhar in which theAadhaar card were being considered invalid on multiple grounds.
The case wasthere was a senior citizen who got his card without any problem,but the problemcropped up when he got the Aadhaar card stating the ‘Year of Birth’ instead of’Date of Birth’ which was taken to be invalid. Subsequently the Secretary ofState (Mumbai) IT Department considered it to be valid as the senior citizenswho were born before the year 1989, can use Year of Birth as they didn’t hadthe provision for birth certificate during that period of time. Recently,Aadhaar has been made mandatory to be linked with PAN card, since then variouscases of mismatching names on PAN card and Aadhaar card have also been reported44. The main reason is that Aadhaar does not require to disclose the name ofthe citizen without initials where as the PAN requires the disclosure of fullname with the initials. Because of this , many people are unable to link PANwith Aadhaar card.
As per the finance act 2017, Aadhaar is made compulsory for applying afresh PAN application and for filing Income Tax returns. The government is also saying that the existingPAN would be cancelled if Aadhaar has not been linked with it; the reason is toregulate the escape of taxation andexclude multiple PAN’s. In this the linkageof Aadhaar to PAN is a good initiative but name of Aadhaar card has not paidmuch attention while implementing this project. Though such types of problemsare occurring, it is to be noticed that Income Tax department made mandatory tolink Aadhaar card with bank accounts by 30 April 2017 to self-certify them tocomply with FACTA (Foreign Tax Compliance Act) regulations 44.
4 Supreme Court of India’s FindingsAadhaar card is a major concern for the nation whichled the Supreme Court of India interferes. The objective of this section is topresent the findings of the court. On 20th November of 2012, the legislative and the state knocked the door ofSupreme Court of India where the court observes the arguments against NationalIdentification Authority of India Bill 2010 which possibly overlaps the Article73 of Constitution of India which states “Extent of the executive power of theUnion, states that, Subject to the provisions of this Constitution, theexecutive power of the Union shall extend to the matters with respect to whichParliament has power to make laws and to the exercise of such rights, authorityand jurisdiction as are exercisable by the Government of India byvirtue of any treaty or agreement”.
On 23rd September of 2013, the SupremeCourt of India held by three-judge bench ordered that the Central Govt. cannotrefuse to give subsidies to the person who does not possess an Aadhaar card.Therefore, court admitted that Aadhaar is voluntary but not mandatory. But in2016, the Supreme Court of India extended the use of Aadhaar Card to MGNREGA,pension schemes, EPF (Employee Provident Fund) and PMJDY though Aadhaar wasfirst only restricted to Cooking Gas subsidies and PDS distribution system. On7th February of 2017, the Supreme Court of India ordered to link mobile numberwith Aadhaar card as well as reminds that the government cannot make Aadhaarmandatory for welfare schemes.
It is to be noticed that in January 2017-March2017 alone the government of India has made possession of an Aadhaar cardmandatory for availing over 30 central schemes. On 27th March 2017, the courtagain reiterated that government cannot make Aadhaar mandatory for welfareschemes 30. However, the court has not stopped the government to make Aadhaarmandatory for other schemes.
Recently Supreme Court of India has also startedhearing on a batch of petitions challenging Section 139AA of Income Tax Actwhich made mandatory linking of Aadhaar with IT Returns. Senior AdvocateAravind Datar argued that the Section 139AA of Income Tax Act is contrary tothe orders of the Supreme Court, and further the section violates Article 14and 19(1)(g) of the constitution of India. A similar type of petition was alsofiled by the former Kerala minister and CPI leader Binoy Viswam stating thatsection 139 AA(1) is ‘illegal and subjective’ and violates Article 14 andArticle 21 of Constitution of India 50.