Specify deadlines for Aadhaar Linking: Supreme Court to mobile service providers and banks

Nov 4, 2017 08:09 IST
Aadhaar Linking

The Supreme Court on 3 November 2017 directed mobile service providers and banks to specify the last dates for linking mobile numbers and bank accounts to Aadhaar through SMSes and e-mails to millions of subscribers.

The ruling was given by a bench of Justices AK Sikri and Ashok Bhushan. The last date of linking mobile numbers with Aadhaar is 6 February 2018 and for linking Aadhaar with bank accounts is 31 December 2017.

However, the Union government has already filed an affidavit in the Supreme Court to extend the Aadhaar-bank account linking deadline to 31 March 2018.

The Bench also made it clear that the case questioning the validity of Aadhaar is scheduled to be heard in last week of November 2017. However, petitioners are free to ask for an extension in the Aadhaar linking of bank accounts, if the hearing of the case is delayed.

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Background
The Rule 2(b) of the Prevention of Money Laundering (Maintenance of Records) Second Amendment Rules, 2017 requires Aadhaar for opening new bank accounts and for verification of existing bank accounts by 31 December 31, 2017, failing which the bank accounts will cease to be operational.

However, the petitioners challenging the Aadhaar scheme argue that the mandatory requirement of Aadhaar for public welfare schemes constrict rights and freedoms which a citizen has long been enjoying. The petitions have termed the Aadhaar Act, 2016 as unconstitutional.

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