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Don't make Aadhaar number mandatory for enrolling NEET candidates, SC tells CBSE

Don't make Aadhaar number mandatory for enrolling NEET candidates, SC tells CBSE

"If required, we can do it again", Venugopal said after petitioners challenging the constitutional validity of the Aadhaar scheme sought an extension of the deadline to link the 12-digit unique identity number with various government schemes and services.

The petitioners, who approached the court against the CBSE notification and others who have challenged the Aadhaar scheme, said the government had been issuing several such notifications, which in fact, amounted to contempt of the Supreme Court's orders.

He urged the court to pass an order to extend the time limit for linking Aadhaar with various services.

A five-judge Constitution bench comprising CJI and Justices AK Sikri, AM Khanwilkar, DY Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan had agreed with the contention of Venugopal. Other ID proofs like passport, voter ID card and ration card will do, the apex court said.

The mandatory Aadhaar rule will apply on all NEET candidates, except those residing in Assam, Meghalaya and Jammu and Kashmir, the board had said.

The Supreme Court has come out in favour of the plaintiff, quashing the requirement and ruling that the Aadhaar details are not compulsory for any all-India level examination.

"Notwithstanding judicial scrutiny and government's well-intentioned moves, the banks, particularly those in the PSUs, may find it hard and challenging to complete the task of linking Aadhaar with the accounts of all the customers by March 31, 2018, thus necessitating relaxation of the deadline", the Assocham said in a statement.

"The deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar with various services and welfare schemes is March 31". Senior Advocate Arvind Datar, who contended against the Aadhaar plot, said it abused the essential privileges of nationals.

However, the CBSE had made the Aadhaar number or Aadhaar enrolment number mandatory for students aspiring to take the NEET 2018.

The plea, filed by a Gujarat resident, Abid Ali Patel, was mentioned in the morning before the Constitution Bench, which made a decision to urgently hear it post-lunch.

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