An Aadhaar biometric identity card, issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI). (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

This Five-Judge Apex Court Bench Will Hear The Aadhaar Matter From Jan. 17

The Supreme Court of India will begin hearing from Jan. 17 a batch of petitions challenging the validity of Aadhaar and the mandatory linkage of the biometric identity to several services and social welfare schemes.

The Constitution bench would comprise Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, and Justices AM Khanwilkar, AK Sikri, Ashok Bhushan and DY Chandrachud, according to the Supreme Court’s website.

The final hearing in the matter will begin five years after the first petition was filed. The Supreme Court has dealt with cases related to it, such as the Aadhaar-PAN linkage and the Right to Privacy judgement which arose in the context of challenges to the Aadhaar scheme.

A separate Constitution bench of the Supreme Court of India had extended the deadline to link Aadhaar with all services—from bank accounts to mobile services— to March 31 from its earlier Dec. 31 deadline. Petitioners had sought an extension to the deadline until the court finally decides on the challenge to the validity of the 12-digit unique ID.