In a shift from its interim order restricting the use of the Aadhaar card for only Public Distribution System (PDS) and LPG subsidy, the Supreme Court on Thursday allowed the use of the unique identity number for all central and state schemes.
These include falgship government programmes such as Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA), Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana and employee provident fund and pension schemes.
The move comes after the Centre on Wednesday told the apex court that the use of the Aadhaar card will be voluntary.
The Centre said that the government's "highest functionary" would file an affidavit stating that possessing an Aadhar card would not be mandatory for getting benefits under the social welfare schemes.
"Aadhaar card scheme is purely voluntary and not mandatory till matter is decided by this court," said the bench headed by Chief Justice HL Dattu.