The Madras High Court dismissed a plea against a state government order insisting on the linkage of Aadhaar with electricity consumption consumer billing number in Tamil Nadu to avail certain services, LiveLaw reported. According to the report, the bench of acting Chief Justice T Raja and Justice D. Bharatha Chakravarthy observed that the petition was “devoid of merits”. What’s the case about? The Tamil Nadu government’s energy department had issued an order in October 2022, permitting Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO) to conduct Aadhaar authentication of citizens for availing electricity services. Advocate M.L Ravi, the President of Desiya Makkal Sakthi Katchi, filed a public interest litigation reviewed by MediaNama, challenging the state government’s order on the following grounds: Mandatory Aadhaar authentication will deprive deserving persons—tenants residing in dwelling units having the same address with individual metres—of the electricity subsidy under the Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission. The hardship caused by the process will lead to social discrimination in welfare schemes. The petitioner also noted that the move will greatly affect those who don’t have an Aadhaar card. The petition notes that the move is arbitrary because it is against Supreme Court’s judgment in the Justice K.S. Puttaswamy vs Union of India case wherein the court permitted Aadhaar authentication only in schemes which were for a targeted class. It further states that the same requirement for all domestic connections has not been permitted by the SC. Why it matters? The Tamil Nadu government has been fast-tracking the process of…
TN: Madras HC rejects plea against mandatory Aadhaar linkage for electricity services
According to the court, if anyone without an Aadhaar is willing to avail of the subsidy, they can enroll for Aadhaar. But is it so simple?
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