On Friday, Lok Sabha amended the Aadhaar Act by passing a bill. The bill will also amend two related laws. This will now allow people to give biometric ID to obtain identity verification. This will help them in obtaining services like opening bank accounts and getting connections.
The Background of the Amendment
The lower house of the parliament amended the Aadhaar Act by passing a bill called Aadhaar and Other Laws (Amendment) Bill. This Bill proposes to change the Aadhaar Act, Indian Telegraph Act and the Prevention of Money Laundering Act. This was done to comply with judgement pronounced by the Supreme Court on 26th September 2018. This judgement upheld the constitutional validity of the project of unique identifications. It, however, did so with certain restriction s and changes. The Supreme Court had also prohibited the use of Aadhaar based KYC for bank accounts and mobile connections.
The Union minister for IT and electronics, Ravi Shankar Prasad spoke on the fact that Lok Sabha amended the Aadhaar Act by passing a bill. In a statement, he said, “Aadhaar being a digital identity has removed the role of a middleman in a substantial measure whose basic role was cutting, fitting and setting.”
Ravi Shankar Prasad also gave a very emotional speech in the lower house of the Parliament. He took out his Aadhaar card for everyone to see and said, “It doesn’t tell about my caste, religion and medical condition. It is safe and secured and is for India and Indians.”
The changes brought about by the Bill
After Lok Sabha amended the Aadhaar Act by passing a bill on Wednesday, significant changes were made. The Bill moved by Ravi Shankar Prasad bans the storage of core biometric information and Aadhaar numbers by service providers. The Bill also makes it very clear that no one can be denied service just because they are not their Aadhaar. The legislature has proposed that service providers can use other offline means of identification such as passports or other valid documents as well.
The Lok Sabha amended the Aadhaar Act by passing a bill and it was a marvellous site. Lok Sabha TV is often characterised by wasting of the Parliaments time. This was, however, a brilliant show of legislative efficiency of the government.