The Election Commission of India’s (ECI) proposal to link Voter-Id with Aadhar card has been approved by the Union Law Ministry of India. Erstwhile, the process of linking Aadhar card with Voter id was started in February 2015 and had successfully linked 38 crore voter cards till August 2015, when the process was suspended. The linking process was suspended on directions of the Supreme Court of India, which restricted the use of Aadhar Card to Public Distribution System (PDS) like LPG and Kerosene distribution. The ECI re-appealed to the Law Secretary in August 2019, proposing amendments in the Aadhar Act, 2016 and Representation of the People Act, 1950. The approval of the amendment is seen as a necessary step to clean and legitimize the voters’ list.
What is the seeding of Aadhar – Voter Id?
ECI is struggling with several cases of bogus voters and duplicate entries, which finally misrepresents the real mandate of the citizens of democratic India. To curb down such irregularities, ECI had proposed to link two important databases Viz. Voter Id and Aadhar Card, which can reduce the instances of bogus identities and voters. The proposal has been approved by the Union Law Ministry.
As per the amendment, Aadhar details will be asked from the new entries as well as from the enrolled voters, for linking with Voter Ids. In the initial phase, the voter enrollment will be allowed even when the applicant doesn’t furnish the Aadhar details. Also, the existing enrolled voters can continue with their enrollment without Aadhar seeding.
Data privacy and safeguard measures have been submitted to the Union Law Ministry by the ECI. The safeguard measures were both from Application and infrastructure levels, also non-interference with the Aadhar ecosystem was ensured. The safeguard measured submitted by EIC has been accepted and approved.