This case will decide if the constitutional validity of the Aadhar Scheme.
In 2011, the Central Government initiated a new identity document known as the Aadhar Card which was to be issued by a new agency, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI). This card would be the basic identity card in India and would be available to every resident of the country free of cost.
However, to get this unique identity number, every resident would submit their biometric data which includes a scan of their fingerprints and retinas. This information would then be housed in a governmental database.
The Government has also progressively made the Aadhar Card mandatory for numerous welfare schemes. These include subsidised food under the Public Distribution System, Labour for a wage under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme and even the Mid-Day Meal Scheme providing free lunches to schoolchildren.
The Aadhar Scheme was challenged before the Supreme Court by Justice K.S. Puttaswamy, a retired judge of the Karnataka High Court alleging several infringements of fundamental rights guaranteed by the constitution. These objections can broadly be divided under two heads,
In response, the government has argued that India has no right to privacy at all and that the Government is well within its powers to make the Aadhar card mandatory for any reason. It is further argued that such a measure is necessary to prevent corruption and leakages in welfare schemes across India and the absence of such a measure has cost the people an untold amount of money.
A petition in support of Justice Puttaswamy challenging the Aadhar Card.
The Counter-Affidavit in support of the government.
Please note that the personal details of the Petitioners have been redacted.
We would like to thank Mr. Rahul Narayan, Advocate-on-Record for providing us with these documents.
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