Supreme Court to set up Constitution bench to hear pleas against making Aadhaar mandatory

The apex court bench issued notice to the Centre on a separate plea filed by an individual challenging the linking of mobile phone numbers with Aadhaar.

Published: 30th October 2017 12:11 PM  |   Last Updated: 30th October 2017 05:08 PM   |  A+A-

Aadhaar, the 12 digit unique-identity number, is currently required for services ranging from getting subsidised cooking gas to opening bank account and obtaining a new phone number.

By Online Desk

The Supreme Court on Monday afternoon resumed hearing the Aadhaar matter. The apex court has decided that the five-judge bench will hear the matter of constitutional validity of Aadhaar in the last week of November.

A constitution bench would also be set up to hear a clutch of petitions challenging the Centre's decision to make Aadhaar mandatory for availing various services and government welfare schemes.

READ HERE | Supreme Court to set up Constitution bench to hear pleas against Aadhaar

Earlier in the day, the SC sought the Centre's response on a plea challenging the mandatory linking of mobile phones with Aadhaar.

A bench of Justice A.K. Sikri and Justice Ashok Bhushan gave the Centre four-weeks time to respond.

The court also gave time to the West Bengal government to amend its petition questioning the linking of Aadhaar for giving of subsidy by the state's Labour Department. It observed: "how could state government challenge a law passed by the Centre?"

READ FULL REPORT HERE | Aadhaar case: SC comes down heavily on Mamata government, asks how can state file a plea challenging Parliament's mandate

The court said West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee could challenge the Aadhaar law as an "individual" and a "citizen". 

However, it also observed that "this way Centre would start challenging the laws passed by the States".

Here is what the apex court said:

2.05 pm: Supreme Court's five-judge constitution bench to hear the Aadhar matter in the last week of November. CJI Deepal Misra has said that the court will try to constitute the constitution bench by Novenmber end.

1.00 pm: The attorney-general will mention the Aadhaar case at 2 pm.

11.30am: Supreme Court also sent notice to telecom companies.

11.29am: Supreme Court issues notice to Centre, asks it to file the response within 4 weeks. The Centre had informed the apex court that the deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar to avail benefirs of various government schemes has been extended till March 31 next year.

11.10am: Supreme Court asks West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee to file the petition in an individual capacity.  Launching a fresh salvo at the Centre last week, the West Bengal chief minister had challenged that she won't link her Aadhaar number with her mobile number and dared the Centre to disconnect her number for disobedience.

"I will not link my Aadhaar with my telephone number under any circumstance. If the Centre disconnects my phone, let them do it. I urge you to do the same. How many telephone connections will they disconnect?" she had said.

READ HERE: Debate on compulsory Aadhaar leaves public puzzled

11.09am: Supreme Court observed how can a state challenge a law passed by the Centre.

11.08am: West Bengal government had filed plea challenging linking and will now amend it and re-file the same.

The West Bengal government challenged the provision which says that without Aadhaar, the benefits of social welfare schemes would not be extended.

Earlier, the Centre had told the apex court that the deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar to avail benefits of various government schemes has been extended till March 31 next year for those who do not have the 12-digit biometric identification number.

It had said that the deadline extension from December end till March 31, 2018, would apply only to those who do not have Aadhaar and are willing to enrol for it.

ALSO READ: Another Aadhaar card 'goof up': 800 villagers in Haridwar have same date of birth

Several petitions, challenging the Centre's move to make Aadhaar mandatory for welfare schemes and notifications to link it with mobile numbers and bank accounts, are pending in the apex court.

(With inputs from ANI and PTI)


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