Aadhaar-PAN linking explained: What is Section 139AA of IT Act upheld by SC?
The Supreme Court on Wednesday declared the Centre’s flagship Aadhaar scheme as constitutionally valid and upheld the mandatory use of the unique identification number for allotment of Permanent Account Number (PAN).
The apex court, however, struck down some provisions fo Aadhaar scheme including its linking with bank accounts, mobile phones and school admissions.
A five-judge constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra held that while Aadhaar would remain mandatory for filing of IT returns and allotment of PAN, it would not be mandatory to link Aadhaar to bank accounts and telecom service providers cannot seek its linking of Aadhaar for mobile connections.
The linking of PAN with Aadhaar was made mandatory by inserion of section 139AA in the Income Tax Act, which was upheld by the verdict pronounced by Justice A K Sikri who wrote the judgement for himself, CJI and Justice A M Khanwilkar.
Here is what section 139AA of Income Tax Act is:
After section 139A of the Income-tax Act, the following section shall be inserted, namely:—
139AA. Quoting of Aadhaar number.—(1) Every person who is eligible to obtain Aadhaar number shall, on or after the 1st day of July, 2017, quote Aadhaar number—
(i) in the application form for allotment of permanent account number;
(ii) in the return of income:
Provided that where the person does not possess the Aadhaar Number, the Enrolment ID of Aadhaar application form issued to him at the time of enrolment shall be quoted in the application for permanent account number or, as the case may be, in the return of income furnished by him.
(2) Every person who has been allotted permanent account number as on the 1st day of July, 2017, and who is eligible to obtain Aadhaar number, shall intimate his Aadhaar number to such authority in such form and manner as may be prescribed, on or before a date to be notified by the Central Government in the Official Gazette:
Provided that in case of failure to intimate the Aadhaar number, the permanent account number allotted to the person shall be deemed to be invalid and the other provisions of this Act shall apply, as if the person had not applied for allotment of permanent account number.
(3) The provisions of this section shall not apply to such person or class or classes of persons or any State or part of any State, as may be notified by the Central Government in this behalf, in the Official Gazette.
Explanation.—For the purposes of this section, the expressions—
(i) “Aadhaar number”, “Enrolment” and “resident” shall have the same meanings respectively assigned to them in clauses (a), (m) and (v) of section 2 of the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016 (18 of 2016);
(ii) “Enrolment ID” means a 28 digit Enrolment Identification Number issued to a resident at the time of enrolment.