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Aadhar Bill passed in LS despite protests; opposition flags privacy issues

News Agencies | Updated on: 14 February 2017, 5:53 IST
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  • The House had earlier taken up discussion on the Bill with Jaitley insisting that its focus was entirely on the usage of government money for targeted subsidy.
  • Jaitley asserted that it was a money bill, overruling Congress\' objections that it has been turned into a money bill to avoid voting in the Rajya Sabha where the government does not have a majority.

The Lok Sabha on Friday passed the Aadhar Bill amid Opposition's demand to refer the bill to a standing committee.

The House had earlier taken up discussion on the bill with Finance Minister Arun Jaitley insisting that its focus was entirely on the usage of government money for targeted subsidy.

Jaitley also asserted that it was a money bill, overruling Congress' objections that it has been turned into a money bill to avoid voting in the Rajya Sabha where the government does not have a majority.

As the Finance Minister proposed taking up the bill for consideration, BJD's B Mahtab expressed concern over possible "invasion of privacy" if it in its current form becomes a law and sought that it be referred to a standing committee, saying that the government should not rush.

Mallikarjun Kharge (Congress) and P Venugopal (AIADMK) supported the BJD leader's demand, with the former saying that they were not against it but there are "flaws".

Jaitley said a discussion on the institution of Aadhar has been going on for over seven years after the then UPA government approved a bill in September 2010, and introduced it in Parliament in December.

"Entire discussion in seven years has now culminated," he said, noting that it was discussed in standing committee and extensive public suggestions were also received, as he stressed that the government had taken note of all this.

He said the proposed law will help in targeting government subsidy at intended beneficiaries which will result in a lot of savings.

Jaitley told the House that similarly, targeted subsidy through Aadhar cards of LPG consumers had resulted in over Rs 15,000 crore of savings at the Centre.

Four states which had started PDS delivery by a similar exercise on a pilot basis had saved more than Rs 2,300 crore.

"Focus is primarily on the usage of money belonging to Consolidated Fund of India belonging to either the Centre or states," he said as he pushed for its passage.

-PTI

First published: 11 March 2016, 5:27 IST
 
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