SC defers deadline to link Aadhaar with bank a/cs

SC defers deadline to linK Aadhaar with bank a/cs
Accepting the Union government's suggestion, the Supreme Court on Friday deferred the deadline to link Aadhaar with various schemes to March 31, 2018.

The newer deadline would apply to linking of Aadhaar with existing bank accounts, furnishing Aadhaar number while opening new accounts, linking of the unique identification number with mobile phones and schemes offered by state governments.

Mobile phone subscribers were earlier asked to link their number with Aadhaar by February 8. The government had earlier deferred the deadline for linking of Aadhaar with various schemes and services from December 31 to March 31.

IN its interim order, the five-judge Constitution bench presided over by Chief Justice Dipak Misra refused to stay the Centre's decision to link Aadhaar with bank accounts, mobile phones and other schemes.

On Thursday, the bench had held the day-long hearing on a batch of PILs led by former Karnataka High Court Judge Justice K S Puttaswamy.

The bench –also consisting of Justices A K Sikri, A M Khanwilkar, D Y Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan- rejected Attorney General KK Venugopal's suggestion that those opening new bank accounts should produce Aadhaar application or the ten-digit Unique Identification number at the bank.

"We likewise extend the last date for the completion of the process of Aadhaar linking of new bank accounts to March 31, 2018," Justice Chandrachud said, reading out the judgement he authored on behalf of the bench.

The court also said the interim arrangement would continue until the Constitution bench disposes of the proceedings.

All the petitions have now been put for final hearing on January 17, 2018.

The bench said: "We also direct that the extension of the last date for Aadhaar linkage to March 31, 2018 shall apply, besides the schemes of the ministries/departments of the Union government, to all state governments in similar terms."

The court decided to continue with its two-judge bench ruling on June 9 asking citizens with Aadhaar to cite the UID number while filing I-T returns.

In that ruling in the 'Binoy Visman vs Union of India' case- the court had upheld the validity of Section 139AA of the Income Tax Act, saying all those applying for PAN cards would also have to quote Aadhaar number or its enrolment number.

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