An constructive analysis of legitimacy of Aadhaar Act

“Mera Aadhaar, Meri Pehchan” – Hope this quote gave you an inkling about what this article is bringing to your plate. The world’s biggest biometric ID system is what we call Aadhaar in India. World Bank Chief Economist Paul Romer portrayed Aadhaar as “the most sophisticated ID program on the planet.” It is viewed as proof of residence and not proof of citizenship, Aadhaar doesn’t itself award any rights to domicile in India. The concept of aadhaar was born in   India on 28th January 2009 and since then is issued and is valid only in India.

What is Aadhaar about, and how is it used?

Aadhaar is about the identity of an individual. It is a 12-digit unique identity for each Indian individual, including young children and infants. enables unmistakable proof for each Indian occupant. based on demographic and biometric information, establishes each person’s individuality. Each person will receive a unique Aadhaar ID number that is only theirs. It will provide a global identification infrastructure that can be used by any identity-based application, including those for ration cards, visas, and other things. If there are any questions about identity verification, UIDAI (Unique Identification Authority of India) will respond with a Yes/No.

Information gathered as part of Aadhaar The UIDAI only uses the information it collects to issue Aadhaar numbers and confirm the authenticity of Aadhaar number holders.

Name, Date of Birth, Gender, Address, and Parent/Name Guardians are among the basic information fields that the UIDAI is collecting in order to have the option of creating an identity. Also optional are a mobile number and email address. Sensitive data including income, caste and class information, health, bank account information, property information, and so on are not collected. To increase uniqueness, the UIDAI is collecting biometric data, including iris scans, 10 fingerprints, and pictures. The UIDAI is prohibited from accessing personal information in the Aadhaar database; the only responses permitted are a “yes” or “no” to requests to confirm identity. Only a court order or a joint secretary request, in the event of a national security emergency, will grant an exemption. This exception is reasonable, precise, and explicit. Also, this methodology complies with security guidelines for information access used in the US and Europe.

Is the Aadhaar Act infringing on my right to privacy?

In 2012, Judge KS Puttaswamy and Pravesh Khanna contested the Aadhaar structure’s legality on the grounds of the right to privacy. The case of Judge Puttaswamy and Others v. Union of India and Others was brought in 2018 by the Supreme Court’s constitutional bench, which rendered a 4:1 majority decision rejecting this claim. However, certain decrees that made citing an Aadhaar number a requirement has been overturned. A few clauses, including those relating to the disclosure of personal information, the identification of crimes, and the use of the Aadhaar ecosystem by private enterprises, were eliminated from the act. The Bench has invalidated Section 57 of the Aadhaar Act, which mandates

Highlights from the SC decision Privacy and Aadhaar

The Supreme Court decision established three criteria for determining an individual’s right to privacy. The tests include

The phrase “any purpose” is too broad, out of proportion, and open to misunderstanding, according to the Supreme Court. According to the Supreme Court, the justification must be “supported by law.” Also, the possibility of collecting and using Aadhaar numbers for validation in accordance with an agreement was rejected because doing so may compel people to give their consent as an agreement for an illegitimate reason. The agreement must be “upheld by law,” according to the Supreme Court.

Finally, as it would enable the commercial misuse of a person’s biometric and demographic information by private businesses, private entities are not permitted to use Aadhaar numbers with the objective of validation, depending on an agreement with the concerned individual. This successfully prevents businesses from using Aadhaar-based e-KYC to verify a person’s personality, which was primarily how many businesses met the necessary know your customer (KYC) requirements.

Certain provisions of the Aadhaar Act that did not meet the aforementioned proportionality criteria were either struck down or modified by the Supreme Court. Despite these clauses, the Supreme Court determined that the Aadhaar Act, as a whole, is a regulation that serves a legitimate state goal and is proportionate, providing a reasonable exception for firms from using Aadhaar-based electronic know-your-customer (e-KYC) verification of a person’s identity, which was primarily how many businesses met the necessary know your customer (KYC) requirements.

Certain provisions of the Aadhaar Act that did not meet the aforementioned proportionality criteria were either struck down or modified by the Supreme Court. Despite these clauses, the Supreme Court determined that the Aadhaar Act, as a whole, is a law that serves a valid public purpose and is proportionate, making it a reasonable exception to the right to privacy. Hence, it was determined that Section 7 of the Aadhaar Act, which made the Aadhaar number a requirement for receiving government subsidies, benefits, and services (for which money was taken from the Consolidated Fund of India), was significant. PAN and Aadhaar are linked

According to the ruling, it is necessary for an individual to link their PAN, or Permanent Account Number, which is a 10-digit alphanumeric identifier provided by the Income-tax department, to their Aadhaar card. Also, it made it obligatory when filing an income tax return.

The order was explicit that anyone who is not revealing their Aadhaar number will not be prohibited from obtaining any services, including SIM cards or bank accounts. The law suggests that telecom service providers may also utilise offline verification, usage of a visa, or other formally valid record or ways of differentiating proof that has been approved by the federal government, in addition to Aadhaar for authentication.

Justice Delivery System in India


A large percentage of India’s population is currently required to have an Aadhaar. This indicates that everybody claiming eligibility for government aid as well as anyone eligible to cover personal expenses should give up their biometrics to a plan that is now loosely governed by legislation. In order to put this in a larger context, the majority of the Supreme Court seems to believe that Aadhaar is an improved version of the US Social Security Number or the UK National Insurance Number, where it is appropriate to make it mandatory for a person’s financial cooperations with the state (for example, tax, government assistance), but not other things.

Written By:- Devyani Semwal

From:- Lovely Professional University

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