After the Congress welcomed the Supreme Court order regarding the Centre’s decision to make Aadhaar mandatory for the allotment of PAN cards, the BJP said the reaction of the party was “typical of its trait to claim vindication when there is no reason whatsoever”. BJP spokesperson G V L Narsimha Rao noted that the apex court had upheld the validity of an Income Tax Act provision making Aadhaar mandatory for the allotment of PAN cards and filing of tax returns and its partial stay on its execution “would not pose any significant restriction”. “As the Aadhaar coverage is nearly universal with more than 99 per cent of the adult population being in possession of it, not making it mandatory for those who do not have it will not pose any significant restriction.
“The misplaced enthusiasm of the Congress is typical of its trait to claim vindication when there is no reason whatsoever,” he said. The Supreme Court today upheld the validity of section 139AA of the Income Tax Act making Aadhaar mandatory for the allotment of PAN cards and filing of tax returns, but put a partial stay on its implementation till a Constitution bench addressed the related issue of right to privacy.
A bench comprising Justices A K Sikri and Ashok Bhushan also upheld the legislative competence of the Parliament in enacting section 139AA of the Income Tax (IT) Act. The Congress welcomed the decision. “This is a welcome decision. Probably the highest court has realised that the privacy issue of individuals is very serious,” Congress spokesperson Tom Vadakkan said. He said the matter was still pending before a constitution bench of the apex court.