The Apex Court, by 4:1 majority, declared Centre’s flagship Aadhaar scheme as constitutionally valid, but with conditions.
The key takeaways are:
1. Struck down the amendment brought in Prevention of Money Laundering Rules which mandated linking of Aadhar with Bank Account and it is also not required to link to your phone numbers.
2. Upheld Section 139AA of Income Tax Act and it is mandatory to quote Aadhaar/Enrolment ID of Aadhar for filing return of income and for making an application for PAN.
3. Struck down Section 33 (2) of the Aadhaar Act, which permits disclosure of identity information and authentication records for national security. Also struck down 47 and 57 of the Aadhar Act.
4. Individuals, Corporates and private parties can no longer mandate Aadhaar, but statutory authorities can do when there is a backing of a law.
5. Only an authority above Joint Secretary can take a call on sharing data. There has to be consultation between a secretary-level officer and a sitting or retired judge to decide if data is to be shared in national interest.
6. Aadhaar is not mandatory for school admission and children will be given the option to opt out of Aadhaar benefits after becoming adults.
7. Purpose of the Aadhaar Act is legitimate but it is satisfied only if Aadhaar collects minimal data and that adequate measures must be in place to protect data.
8. Asked the central government to come up with a stronger data protection law as soon as possible.