Supreme Court finds govt. defying its order on Aadhaar [Polity]
- Centre was caught red-handed defying SC order directing that no citizen will be denied benefits under government scheme for want of Aadhaar card.
- The Bench discovered that the Centre had been insisting that students submit their Aadhaar number for applying for government scholarship schemes.
- On October 15, 2015, a Constitution Bench led by then Chief Justice of India H.L. Dattu had held that citizens cannot be forced to produce his Aadhaar to avail themselves of government welfare schemes and benefits.
- It had even hinted that the government risked contempt of court if it chooses to continue to make the Aadhaar number a mandatory condition.
- The petition pointed to a letter addressed by the Centre to States and Union Territories to make Aadhaar a mandatory condition for applying for pre-matric, post-matric and merit-cum-means scholarship schemes.
- On October 15 last year, the Constitution Bench had extended the voluntary use of Aadhaar cards to the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA), pensions schemes, Employee Provident Fund and the Prime Minister Jan Dhan Yojana.