Last month, the government had told the court, which is hearing petitions against making Aadhaar linking to bank accounts, mobile phone numbers and others mandatory, that it is willing to extend the deadline to 31 March, 2018.
As the court said that the matter would be heard next week by the Constitution bench, Attorney General K.K. Venugopal indicated that the deadline for the linking of bank accounts with Aadhaar would be extended till March 31, 2018.
Attorney General K K Venugopal, says that the last date for linking Aadhaar to mobile services will remain February 6, 2018, in pursuance of a judicial order.
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The SC will soon set up a Constitution Bench next week to hear interim pleas seeking a stay on mandatory linking Aadhar with services and schemes to avail the services and benefits of government schemes.
This is because the government is complying with a February 6, 2017 order of the court in the Lok Niti Foundation case to tighten up the verification process of mobile phone users through Aadhaar linkage, on the pretext of state security, reports The Hindu (TH).
Senior advocate Shyam Divan, appearing for those who are opposed to Aadhaar scheme told the bench, also comprising justices A. M. Khanwilkar and D. Y. Chandrachud, that the central government should give an undertaking that no coercive steps would be taken against those fail to link their Aadhaar with various services.
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Attorney general KK Venugopal said there can not be a stay on Aadhaar as it has gone on for years. Several petitioners challenging the validity of Aadhaar had claimed it violated privacy rights.
Recently, a nine-judge constitution bench of the apex court had held that Right to Privacy was a Fundamental Right under the Constitution.
"That Aadhaar Act being in force, all notifications for requiring Aadhaar for various welfare programmes, verifying bank account, PAN card and SIM card with Aadhaar stand valid and lawful", it said in a statement. On June 1, 2017, PML Rules have been amended to make Aadhaar mandatory for linking all bank accounts, insurance, pension, mutual funds and DMAT accounts.
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