An overview of recent news related to Aadhaar, which points towards the increase in government schemes being linked to the scheme, and issues faced by citizens:
Govt amends Income Tax rule to make it mandatory to link Aadhaar with PAN
Government of India has amended Rule 114 of the Income Tax Act, which address application for allotment of Permanent Account Numbers (PAN), to make linking Aadhaar with PAN mandatory. What this means is that everyone who already has an Aadhaar card will have to link it to their respective PAN cards. Also, Aadhaar will be mandatory for applying for a new PAN card. Earlier this month, when the Supreme Court partially stayed the Aadhaar-PAN linkage, there was some ambiguity as to what existing Aadhaar card were supposed to do. More on this on Livemint.
Now Aadhaar mandatory for concession on railway tickets as well
Starting from July 1, 2017, if you want to avail concessions of railway tickets you will have to furnish an Aadhaar card. Indian Railways offers concessions to over 50 categories of passengers, including senior citizens, unemployed youth, athletes, and students among several others. Apparently, this will help reduce misuse of the concession facility by agents and touts. Read more on India.com.
Aadhaar mandatory for availing subsidy on e-rickshaws in Delhi
The Aam Admi Party (AAP) government has made Aadhaar mandatory for availing subsidy offered to registered e-rickshaws in Delhi. Owners of registered e-rickshaws in the city are offered financial assistance to the tune of Rs 30,000 for procurement of the vehicles. The government wants to curb fake applications for the grant through this measure. There are more than 31,000 registered e-rickshaws plying on Delhi roads at present. More on this story on The Hindu.
Aadhaar enrollment resumes in two Meghalaya districts
Aadhaar enrollment has resumed in two of the eleven districts in Meghalaya – East Khasi Hills and West Khasi Hills. A Hyderabad-based company has signed a one-year contract to carry out the enrollment exercise. In February this year, enrollment was put on hold after the contract with the company in-charge of the exercise then came to an end. More on this story on The Indian Express.
You can’t use Aadhaar to travel to Nepal and Bhutan
The Home Ministry has clarified that the Aadhaar card is not a valid identity document for Indian travellers headed to Nepal and/or Bhutan. They will have to furnish either a valid passport or their voter identity cards. However, for senior citizens (above 65 years) and young adults (below 15 years), PAN card, driving licence, Central Government Health Service card and ration card will be accepted. Note that Indians do not require a visa to travel to these two countries. More of Scroll.in.
SC refuses to grant relief to social service schemes where Aadhaar is mandatory
The Supreme Court refused to grant relief in several petitions filed against the government’s decision to make Aadhaar mandatory for as many as 17 social service schemes. The Court said that “those who have Aadhaar card will have to show it but those who don’t have it, can show any other alternative id and avail the benefits.” The next hearing is on July 4, 2017. Read more on this development on Bar&Bench.