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The Hindu
The Hindu
Legal Correspondent

Linking electoral roll to Aadhaar: SC asks Randeep Surjewala to approach High Court

The Supreme Court on Monday refused to intervene in a petition filed by Congress leader Randeep Singh Surjewala challenging amendments in the election laws allowing electoral roll data to be linked to Aadhaar.

The Election Laws (Amendment) Act of 2021 requires a person to use the Aadhaar number to establish or authenticate identity on the electoral rolls.

A Bench led by Justice D.Y. Chandrachud asked the counsel for Mr. Surjewala to move the High Court concerned.

The lawyer said elections were due in several States and the issue required an authoritative judgment from the Supreme Court to ensure uniform applicability of the law.

The Bench said if multiple petitions were filed later on, a request could be made then to club and transfer them to the Supreme Court.

‘Right of privacy’

Mr. Surjewala had argued that the linking would “infringe upon the fundamental right of privacy of citizens and is unconstitutional and ultra vires the Constitution”.

"Linking of Aadhaar data with Electronic Electoral Photo Identity Card data will allow the personal and private data of voters to be available to a statutory authority and shall impose a limitation on the voters, i.e., the voters will now have to establish their identity before the Electoral Registration Officer by furnishing their respective Aadhaar details," the petition had argued.

It had contended that the situation would further be aggravated by the fact that at present there were no laws to protect the data of citizens. It claimed the amendment may even enable voter profiling.

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