Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has welcomed the Supreme Court’s verdict of upholding the constitutional validity of Aadhar, calling it a “historic” judgement.
Jaitley said “It is a historic judgement and the whole concept of unique identity number that has been accepted after judicial review is an extremely welcomed decision”.
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He added that Aadhaar, the Centre’s flagship scheme, helps the government in saving Rs 90,000 crore every year with targeted delivery of welfare programmes. It also helps in plugging the leakages across the various schemes.
He acknowledged former chairman of UIDAI, Nandan Nilekani and CEO of UIDAI, Ajay Bhushan Pandey for “convincing the system about the need of Aadhar”.
Jaitley while targeting the critics said, “India can’t afford to be a tech laggard. Everyone who has been criticizing Aadhaar should understand that they cannot defy technology. The mainstream should accept changes, one can understand the fringe being against.”
Taking a dig at Congress, he said, “The Congress cuts a very sorry figure here, they had introduced the idea, but they did not know what to do with it.”
Union IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, while referring to the claims of opposition that Aadhar will be used as a surveillance tool, said, “The Supreme Court has held that the purpose of Aadhaar is legitimate and is in the interest of the state. It is not a surveillance tool.”
“Supreme Court’s verdict on Aadhaar is a victory of good governance, empowerment of ordinary people and the efficient delivery of public services to people of India,” Ravi Shankar Prasad added.
A 5 judge bench of the Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra has upheld the constitutional validity of Aadhar, but has struck down some section of the Aadhar Act. The SC has said that no person’s right can be denied on the ground of lack of Aadhar.