Aadhaar Card is not compulsory

Through your esteemed daily, I would like to draw the kind attention of NERIST, RGU, NIT, Colleges, Banks and various departments of Arunachal Pradesh regarding the making of Aadhaar Card mandatory.

In the matter of Justice K.S. Puttaswamy (Retd.) and Another V/S Union of India and Others vide SC No. 494 of 2012 with transfer petition (Civil) N0. 921 of 2015 and many others, the Supreme Court on its judgments has clearly given order that;

The union of India shall give wide publicity in the electronic and print media including radio and television networks that it is not mandatory for a citizen to obtain an Aadhaar Card;

The production of an Aadhaar card will not be condition for obtaining any benefits otherwise due to a citizen;

The Unique Identification Number or the Aadhaar card will not be used by the respondents for any purpose other than the PDS scheme and in particular for the purpose of distribution of food grains, etc. and cooking fuel, such as kerosene. The Aadhaar card may also be used for the purpose of the LPG distribution Scheme;

The information about an individual obtained by the Unique Identification Authority of India while issuing an Aadhaar card shall not be used for any other purpose, except as may be directed by a court for the purpose of criminal investigation.

Now, even after this historic judgment, it has come to my knowledge that various educational institutes are making Aadhaar card compulsory for admission, which is violation of Supreme Court’s order.

This problem is not confined to educational institute only, even directorate of higher and technical education and others are making it compulsory in the disbursement of stipends to the students.

Although the stipends is a social scheme, but the Supreme Court has clearly mentioned in its order, the social schemes that are to be made compulsory for Aadhaar Card. Moreover, only 40% of Indian populations have enrolled for Aadhaar card so far. So making Aadhaar card compulsory is absurd till the enrollments are 90% to 100%.

Unlike other states, where online Aadhaar enrollment facilities are there, our state Govt. should know that it’s a nightmare for its citizens to obtain an Aadhaar card without any online enrollment facilities and offline enrollment booths. State Govt. should pay more emphasis on enrolling the citizens instead of making it mandatory. Till then relaxations should be given to its citizens especially the student community and employees, who are mostly out of home state or district.

Apart from an educational institute and state Govt. departments, the height of ignorance has escalated to banking sector also. Every time you visit a bank, the employees on the desk of few banks would ask you for Aadhaar Card. And they say it’s RBI’s order. I don’t think that the RBI is more powerful than Supreme Court. Please mend yourself, or shut down your business.

With this, I would like to request the concern authorities of educational institutes of states, Banks and Govt. department to follow the Supreme Court’s order and spare the innocent student and public from harassment. I would also like to request the UIDA and Govt. of Arunachal Pradesh to intensify the enrollment process of Aadhaar Card. Enrollment first then implementation, please.