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Constitutional Validity of Aadhaar, Day 7: This degrades free individuals

This is a record of the proceedings in the Supreme Court bench hearings on the Constitutional validity of Aadhaar. You may read the previous days here: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5, Day 6. Senior Advocate Shyam Divan began the day's presentations with reading out the affidavit of Mr. Siraj Dutta who did an investigation into of starvation deaths of Premani Kunwar, whose pensions were transferred to another account and Etwariya Devi, who was deprived of rations and pensions in Jharkhand because of Aadhaar linking failures. Justice Sikri said the point was taken asked Mr. Divan to frame the factual points in constitutional terms. Mr Divan briefly summarized Santoshi's case. Justice Chandrachud brought up an affidavit about exclusions caused to people with leprosy and how by the very nature of their disease they have no fingerprints or erased or distorted fingerprints. Mr. Divan read from the affidavit. He described these as extreme situations - exclusion, death, and dignity. He stressed that in a democracy, there has to be an element of choice. There can't be just one method of identification imposed. Justice Chandrachud noted that the Court would also need to look at the level of internet penetration in the country.Mr. Divan says that is an issue. And the only answer, the other side has is a buffered authentication where all auth packets are uploaded later. Mr Divan explained that the PoS machine has a memory, so if the internet fails, the machine is often taken to another place which does. He…

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Vidyut is a commentator on socio-political issues with a keen interest in behavioral sciences, digital rights and security and manages to engage her various proficiencies to bring an unusual perspective to issues related with the intersection of tech and people.

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