With the Supreme Court stating that the Aadhaar card will not be mandatory for availing social benefits from the government, the Union finance ministry asked the apex court to allow its use to reduce the country’s fiscal deficit.
In an affidavit filed in the apex court, the ministry admitted a huge amount of money of the public exchequer, spent on the government’s flagship schemes, has been wasted due to undetected fake entities in the list of beneficiaries. Use of Aadhaar card in the implementation of government schemes was to ensure that subsidies are directly given only to the eligible beneficiaries, it said.
The ministry’s affidavit comes in response to a PIL filed challenging the Aadhaar scheme on the ground that it violated privacy and there were no safeguards to check whether genuine Indians were getting it. The SC had on September 23 issued interim orders holding “no person shall suffer for not having Aadhaar card”.
Nearly Rs 7 lakh crore has been spent on government’s 15 flagship schemes in the eleventh plan period.