इंडियन आवाज़     05 Dec 2023 05:55:08      انڈین آواز

Parliament passes Aadhaar Bill rejects amendments

Our Correspondent /

Budget Session of parliament begins. Rail Budget on February 25; General Budget on February 29

Parliament today passed the Aadhaar Bill with Lok Sabha rejecting amendments made by the Rajya Sabha in the bill this evening. Earlier, the Rajya Sabha had returned it to the Lok Sabha with five amendments.

The amendments were moved by Jairam Ramesh of the Congress, includes the one to make Aadhaar voluntary and barring its use for purposes other than subsidies.

Trinamool Congress, BSP and BJD had walked out, protesting non-acceptance of their suggestions by the Finance Minister.

Earlier, Rajya Sabha witnessed procedural tug-of-war on whether the Aadhaar Bill is a money bill or not. The opposition questioned the rationale for converting it into a money bill.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitely explained that since money is being spent from consolidated fund for providing subsidies, it makes it a money bill.

He claimed, the present bill is an improvement over the one drafted by UPA government in 2010 and have strict provisions to protect individual privacy. The only ground on which personal information can be shared with any authority is national security.

Jaitley also scoffed at criticism, Parliament cannot legislate when an issue is sub judice.

Dismissing the arguments of the Finance Minister, Jairam Ramesh of Congress said Aadhaar should not be made mandatory rather it should be voluntary since it is meant for reforming subsidy. He said the term national security is very sweeping and can be used arbitrarily.

Instead it should be public emergency and public safety as in the original bill, he said. Ramesh wanted the Bill should explain the authority of the Unique Identity Authority of India (UID) and no grey area is left for misuse by it.

He also demanded, the bill should be referred to a Select Committee of Rajya Sabha.

The House also witnessed an unprecedented situation when Deputy Chairman Prof. P.J. Kurien allowed Sitaram Yechury of CPIM to initiate the discussion. At one point of time, Prof. Kurien threatened to quit, when his authority was questioned by some members.

The Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Bill, 2016 was certified a money bill by Lok Sabha speaker and passed by Lok Sabha.

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