New Delhi: With critics calling the linking of Aadhar with PAN, under Section 139 AA of the I-T Act, an attempt to dilute civilian liberties, the Supreme Court on Tuesday decided to set up a nine-judge Constitution bench to decide whether privacy is a fundamental right.
According to ANI, the Supreme Court today referred the matter to a nine-judge Constitution Bench to determine whether linking of PAN card with Aadhar breaches an individual’s privacy or not.
The matter will now come up for hearing in the apex court tomorrow.
The development comes days after the apex court briefly stayed the linking of Aadhar to PAN cards amid concerns over breach of privacy.
Responding to it, Centre had then emphatically assured the Supreme Court that biometrics of Aadhar card holders were safe and had not fallen into other hands.
Through its order, the Supreme Court upheld the validity of an Income Tax Act provision making Aadhar mandatory for the allotment of permanent account number (PAN) cards and the filing of tax returns but imposed a partial stay on its implementation until a constitution bench addresses the right to privacy issue.
A bench comprising justices AK Sikri and Ashok Bhushan also upheld the legislative competence of Parliament in enacting Section 139AA of the Income Tax Act.