NEW DELHI: The Opposition on Thursday criticised the government during the discussion on amendments to provide legal backing for voluntary seeding of biometric Aadhaar ID with mobile numbers and bank accounts.
Opposing the bill, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, Leader of the Congress in the Lok Sabha, said the government used the ordinance route to bring in the legislation.
He said the ordinance was issued by the last government (from 2014-19) and the current government has brought it as a legislation.
The government is "resorting to the ordinance route without any rhyme and reason".
Chowdhury said it was the UPA government, which brought in the law, to which Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said the NDA government gave legal status to Aadhaar.
"You have loaned the concept of Aadhaar from us (Aapne Aadhaar udhaar liya hain)," he said. Chowdhury said the Supreme Court had also rapped the government for violating privacy in Aadhaar.
Prasad said, "Under you (the UPA), Aadhaar lacked any backing (Aadhaar niradhar tha). We made a law for it". The minister said Rs 7. 84 lakh crore was sent through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) to beneficiaries under different schemes. Nearly 1. 41 lakh crore have been saved from middlemen.
He said 123.81 crore people have Aadhaar cards and nearly 6.91 crore bank accounts have been linked to it.