Former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi’s famous remark that only 15 paise of every rupee for welfare of the downtrodden reaches them today found mention in the judgement of the Supreme Court which said this “malaise” can be taken care of by the Aadhaar scheme. “A former prime minister of this country has gone on record to say that out of one rupee spent by the government for welfare of the downtrodden, only 15 paisa thereof actually reaches those persons for whom it is meant. “It cannot be doubted that with UID/Aadhaar much of the malaise in this field can be taken care of,” a bench of justices A K Sikri and Ashok Bhushan said. It said Aadhaar can take care of malaise of duplicate beneficiaries reaping the fruits of welfare schemes meant for the genuine deprived class. The bench said a major hurdle in transfer of the benefits to the genuine needy is the lack of means to correctly identify such persons. “Resultantly, lots of ghosts and duplicate beneficiaries are able to take undue and impermissible benefits,” it said.
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The judges said it is the duty of a welfare State to come out with schemes to take care of needs of the deprived class and ensure adequate opportunities are provided to them. It noted that due to various reasons including corruption, the benefit of welfare schemes does not reach those who are supposed to receive them.