Another extension to deadline

The earlier deadline for the same was March 31, 2018. The Ministry of Electronics and IT, in an office memorandum issued, informed about the extension of the stipulated date for the linkage to June 30.

Now, link Aadhaar with welfare schemes upto June 30

New Delhi : The government on Wednesday extended by three months to June 30 the deadline for linking of Aadhaar with welfare schemes, where the benefits are funded from the Consolidated Fund of India.

The earlier deadline for the same was March 31, 2018. The Ministry of Electronics and IT, in an office memorandum issued, informed about the extension of the stipulated date for the linkage to June 30.

The deadline for linking bank accounts and mobile phone numbers with Aadhaar has already been extended indefinitely, till the five-judge constitution bench delivers its judgement on petitions challenging the validity of the biometric scheme and its enabling law.

Sources familiar with the development said that while there is a three-month breather for linking of the 12-digit biometric identifier with welfare schemes (that include PDS, MGNREGA and pension schemes amongst others), availing of the benefits will require either the Aadhaar number, enrollment slip or request for Aadhaar enrolment after March 31.

The extension has been given as the government wanted to ensure that genuine beneficiaries who do not have an Aadhaar number are not denied benefits for the lack of the biometric identifier, they added.

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court had refused to pass an interim order extending the deadline of March 31 for linking of Aadhaar with the welfare schemes.

The move comes at a time when the Constitution bench of the Supreme Court is hearing a clutch of petitions challenging the Aadhaar Act and the use of biometric identifier in various government and non-government services.

UIDAI CEO Ajay Bhushan Pandey has given his presentation in the Supreme Court to defend the government’s ambitious Aadhaar scheme. The hearing on the petitions challenging the constitutional validity of Aadhaar and its enabling law is scheduled to resume on April 3.

Keeping vigil to safeguard Aadhaar data: UIDAI

New Delhi : The UIDAI on Wednesday sought to ease concerns over any potential misuse of Aadhaar data, asserting that it keeps a constant vigil to ensure that user data is fully protected, and that the biometric identifier is backed by strong laws.

The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) also said that banks can continue to link Aadhaar with bank accounts, but that accounts cannot not be deactivated for the lack of Aadhaar, till the Supreme Court verdict is pronounced.

“As far as Aadhaar data is concerned, data is fully protected. Yesterday, I presented before the Supreme Court that there is not a single breach from the Aadhaar system during the last seven years. We are constantly on vigil,” UIDAI CEO, Ajay Bhushan Pandey, told reporters on the sidelines of GSTN Foundation Day.

Stating that the nodal authority for Aadhaar is well aware of the new threats that are emerging, Pandey asserted that UIDAI remains committed to keeping the data safe at all times.

“In the IT world, new technologies are coming. While it is enabling the people, it is also enabling the other side who do not have good intentions. So what we need to do is keep upgrading our technology, keep assessing what new technology our opponents would apply, how to take proactive steps in time, so that our data remains safe…,” Pandey said.

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