Haven’t linked your Aadhaar number with your mobile phone yet? Breathe easy. The Supreme Court on Tuesday indefinitely extended the March 31 deadline for linking Aadhaar with existing bank accounts, PAN, mobile phone numbers, and various other services. However, according to the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), your Aadhaar would still be required for opening new bank accounts or applying for Tatkal passports. For now, you could safely ignore persistent messages from telecom service providers and banks to link your Aadhaar to your phone number and account. The apex court also ruled that the government could continue to seek beneficiaries’ Aadhaar, the 12-digit national biometric identifier number, for the transfer of benefits under schemes funded from the consolidated fund of India. “We direct that the interim order passed on December 15, 2017, shall stand extended till the matter is finally heard and the judgment is pronounced,” a five-judge Constitution bench, headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra, said. The judgment provided relief to hundreds or thousands of people who have not yet linked their bank accounts or mobile phones with Aadhaar. The Aadhaar linking deadline has been extended till the apex court delivers its judgment on a batch of petitions challenging the constitutional validity of the biometric identification scheme. The current deadline for linking Aadhaar with bank accounts, mobile phone numbers, and other services was March 31, after it had been extended by the apex court on December 15 last year. As Chief Justice Deepak Misra said their interim order stood extended, the Attorney General told the court that the government was prepared to extend the deadline in the last week of March because arguments in the matter would have concluded by then. “We were prepared for extension in last week of March,” he told the court in a bid to stall the extension. The Constitution Bench, which also includes Justice A K Sikri, Justice A M Khanwilkar, Justice D Y Chandrachud, and Justice Ashok Bhushan, had on March 7 ruled that the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) would not insist on Aadhaar-only identification for NEET and other all-India examinations. Here are the new rules regarding Aadhaar linking with mobile phone numbers, bank accounts, and services, and the top 10 developments regarding the Aadhaar biometric identification scheme: 1) Aadhaar must for opening bank accounts: The requirement of Aadhaar for opening new bank accounts will continue, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) said on Tuesday. The UIDAI, however, added that “for those who do not have Aadhaar, they are required to apply for Aadhaar and provide the Aadhaar application number while applying for availing the aforesaid services”. 2) Aadhaar must for applying for tatkal passports: The UIDAI on Tuesday said the requirement of Aadhaar for applying for Tatkal passports will continue. “As per the Supreme Court’s order dated 13th March 2018, the requirement of Aadhaar for opening new bank accounts and applying for Tatkal passports under the relevant laws continues,” the UIDAI, which issues the 12-digit biometric identifier, said in a late evening tweet.
Source: Business Standard