Abdul Wahab Khan | Staff Reporter
PANAJI: Adhering to SC directives, the department of women and child development has decided not to insist on submission of Aadhaar card details for availing two most popular state government schemes – Ladli Laxmi and Griha Aadhar.
The Union ministry of women and child development has recently issued directives to all states asking them to adhere to the recent Supreme Court’s interim order, which mandates that no person should be denied any benefits or “suffer” for not having Aadhaar cards issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India.
In compliance to the direction, the department of women and child development issued a circular asking all taluka offices not to insist on Aadhaar card from the applicants of Ladli Laxmi and Griha Aadhar schemes.
A senior official from the department confirmed that Aadhaar card is not compulsory, saying that taluka offices have been informed of the Supreme Court directives.
“We cannot go against the SC guidelines; otherwise it will be contempt of court. We will henceforth not insist on submission of Aadhaar card for getting the doles. Several applications have been pending due to non-submission of Aadhar card, which will now be processed,” he said.
According to the figures available with the department, from 2012 till July this year, 1,38,699 applications had been received under Griha Aadhar scheme. But sanction letters have been issued to 1,27,654 applicants whereas 7,922 applications are still pending.
On the other hand, 31,154 applications had been received for Ladli Laxmi, of which 25,075 applicants have been issued sanction letters, while 9626 applications are being scrutinized.
The apex court has made it clear in its interim order that Aadhaar card cannot be made compulsory for government services and any authority violating this direction of would be taken to task.
Despite the SC order, applicants are still being asked to furnish their Aadhaar card details in order to get the benefits under the schemes.
“I had to wait for two months to reapply for the Ladli Laxmi scheme since I did not possess the Aadhaar card,” said a woman from Vasco who had been to the capital city to collect her sanction letter from the department.
As per the notification, under clause 4 of the Griha Aadhar scheme, Aadhaar card has been made mandatory document for availing the dole of Rs 1,200 every month. The applicants of Ladli Laxmi scheme are also made to submit Aadhaar card for availing Rs 1 lakh dole.
The court in the interim order on August 11, however, restrained the Centre from linking the Aadhaar card with any social welfare scheme.
“UIDAI/Aadhaar will not be used for any other purposes except PDS, kerosene and LPG distribution system,” the bench headed by Justice J Chelameswar had said, but made it clear that even for availing these facilities Aadhaar card will not be mandatory.