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Lawyer petitions Supreme Court to quash ‘undemocratic’ Aadhaar ordinance

Reepak Kansal, a lawyer, filed a petition in the Supreme Court seeking that the Aadhar ordinance be quashed. Kansal said that the Centre promulgated and approved the Aadhaar and Others Laws (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019 in a hurry, to overturn the Supreme Court’s verdict on Aadhaar, reported Business Standard. Terming it undemocratic and unconstitutional, he said the ordinance would authorise private companies to use, sell and profit from people’s personal data. On September 26 last year the Supreme Court ruled that Aadhaar was constitutionally valid but specified a host of services for which it could not be made mandatory. While deeming Aadhaar necessary for a PAN card, income tax returns, and availing welfare schemes and subsidies from the government, the Supreme Court said it could not be made mandatory for such things as opening a bank account, buying a SIM card, school admissions, and appearing for the CBSE, UGC and NEET examinations. But in February, the Union Cabinet approved the promulgation of the Aadhaar ordinance, which would allow private companies to use Aadhaar for authentication and verification -- though the government claimed it would on the contrary protect people’s Aadhaar data from misuse. The ordinance had the same changes to the Aadhaar Act as proposed by the Aadhaar and Other Laws (Amendment Bill), 2018, which was passed in the Lok Sabha in January, but later that month lapsed in the Rajya Sabha. What does the ordinance do? Allows private bodies such as banks and telcos to use Aadhaar as one of…

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