Aadhaar linking deadline will be extended to March 31, Centre tells SC

Mandatory linking of Aadhaar will be extended to March 31 next year

Mandatory linking of Aadhaar will be extended to March 31 next year

Many citizens can have a sigh of relief as the Government on Thursday told the Supreme Court that it will extend the deadline for linking Aadhaar with bank accounts, mobile numbers and other services.

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.

Aadhaar card is a bigger buzzword and as the central government makes it necessary to link with Bank accounts, Public Provident Fund (PPF), insurance policies, mobile sim, ration card and perhaps even PAN before the end-December as the deadline.

Attorney General K K Venugopal said that the last date for linking Aadhaar with mobile services will remain unchanged.

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).

The Attorney General had told the court that no coercive action would be taken against those who do not have the Aadhaar card but are willing to enrol for.

26 Nov 2017, the top court had said that it would hear the petitions after its constitution bench concludes hearing the Delhi-Centre governance dispute.

The Supreme Court on October 30 said that a Constitution Bench would start hearing on the clutch of pleas against Aadhaar scheme from the last week of November. Several petitioners challenging the validity of Aadhaar had claimed it violated privacy rights. The government had in August extended by four months the deadline for linking PAN with Aadhaar till 31 December, pending the Supreme Court verdict. He had said such people would not be denied the benefits of social welfare schemes till 31 March.

At present, the deadline for linking the 10-digit alphanumeric PAN (Permanent Account Number), issued by the Income Tax Department, with Aadhaar is 31 December.

The Centre had made Aadhaar mandatory to avail various welfare schemes including PDS.

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