Aadhaar: Justice Chandrachud lone dissenting voice

Aadhaar: Justice Chandrachud lone dissenting voice

An outside view of the Supreme Court, in New Delhi, on Wednesday. The Supreme Court declared the Centre's flagship Aadhaar scheme as constitutionally valid but struck down some of its provisions including its linking with bank accounts, mobile phones and

Justice D Y Chandrachud, a Supreme Court judge, on Wednesday held that Aadhaar reduced the individual's multiple identities to a 12-digit number, in violation of constitutional provisions.

He said when Aadhaar is seeded into every database, it becomes a bridge across discreet data silos, allowing anyone with access to this information to reconstruct a profile of an individual’s life.

“This is contrary to the right to privacy and poses severe threats due to potential surveillance,” he held in a dissenting view on the validity of Aadhaar programme and the Act.

He said one right cannot be taken away at the behest of the other.

“The state has failed to satisfy this court that the targeted delivery of subsidies which animate the right to life entails a necessary sacrifice of the right to individual autonomy, data protection and dignity when both these rights are protected by the Constitution,” he said.

Justice Chandrachud held the Aadhaar Act, the rules and regulations framed under it, and the framework prior to its enactment as unconstitutional.

“Identity is necessarily a plural concept. The Constitution also recognizes a multitude of identities through the plethora of rights that it safeguards. The technology deployed in the Aadhaar scheme reduces different constitutional identities into a single identity of a 12-digit number and infringes the right of an individual to identify herself/himself through a chosen means,” he said.