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  India   All India  22 Apr 2017  Why link Aadhaar with PAN: Supreme Court to govt

Why link Aadhaar with PAN: Supreme Court to govt

THE ASIAN AGE. | J VENKATESAN
Published : Apr 22, 2017, 12:34 am IST
Updated : Apr 22, 2017, 12:36 am IST

The A-G also said that the court itself had recently ordered that Aadhaar should be made mandatory to procure SIM cards.

Supreme Court of India (Photo: PTI)
 Supreme Court of India (Photo: PTI)

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday questioned the Centre as to why it has enacted a law making it mandatory to link Aadhaar with PAN cards for filing I-T returns from the assessment year 2018-2019.

A bench of justices A.K. Sikri and Ashok Bhushan asked Attorney-General Mukul Rohatgi whether such a law was the remedy to end the duplication of PAN cards. 

 

The bench was hearing a petition filed by CPI’s Binoy Viswam, challenging the introduction of Section 139 AA in the Income-Tax Act.

When the A-G said “we brought the law as we found multiple PAN cards with the same people”, justice Sikri asked him, “Is this the remedy? Forcibly asking people to get Aadhaar cards when this court has already said Aadhaar is not mandatory.”

Mr. Rohatgi said the court had passed an order when there was no law on Aadhaar, but “now we have enacted a law and there is a legislative mandate.” He said fake PANs and ration cards have flooded markets and jinxed financial transactions. A person can get multiple PANs in the name of Mukesh Gupta, then another PAN as Mukesh Kumar Gupta and a third one as M.K. Gupta. 

 

The A-G also said that the court itself had recently ordered that Aadhaar should be made mandatory to procure SIM cards.

Appearing for the petitioner, Arvind Datar and Sriram Prakkat said that under the new law if Aadhaar was not linked to PAN, his PAN cards would be invalid, and one cannot make any business transactions. 

The petitioner said he did not hold an Aadhaar card on the legitimate expectation that the said scheme was not mandatory in view of the orders of the court. The petitioner said he was now being coerced into obtaining an Aadhaar card in complete violation of his right to privacy.

He said that when an existing regime of PAN was in place, the said provision was enacted merely to render nugatory the larger bench reference pending before the court. 

 

Bringing such a provision, as an amendment to the Finance Bill, falls foul of Article 14 of the Constitution, he said and prayed for quashing the provision, and an interim stay on its operation. 

Considering the importance of the matter the bench posted the matter for final hearing on April 26.

Tags: supreme court, pan cards, aadhaar, mukul rohatgi
Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi