- ‘Election Laws (Amendment) Bill’, 2021 was passed in the parliament in December 2021. This bill seeks to link aadhaar cards with Voter IDs.
Pros of linking aadhaar card with Voter ID:
- This can be used to eliminate fake voter cards.
- Some people have voter cards in 2 or more areas. These duplicate voter cards can be eliminated by linking aadhaar cards with Voter IDs.
- This linking can clear the path to internet voting or e-voting.
Cons of linking aadhaar card with Voter ID:
- There are fake and duplicate aadhaar cards too. So, linking aadhaar cards with voter IDs may complicate the issue.
- If legitimate voters do not have an aadhaar or if they could not link it due to any reason, they will be removed from the list. For example, some homeless people do not have aadhaar cards yet. In the 2018 Telangana Assembly elections, linking aadhaar cards with Voter ID led to the elimination of 20 lakh voters.
- Even though the Aadhaar linking is voluntary, the bill mentioned that the electoral registration officer may require the submission of the Aadhaar number both for new enrolments and for those already enrolled for the purposes of authentication of entries. So, people cannot even reject linking citing privacy issues.
- This can be a threat to privacy because this linking can lead to the profiling of voters. Several states collected caste, religion and other sensitive information as part of aadhaar data collection. So, this can be misused by some politicians to selectively eliminate some voters based on their caste or any other identity.
Linking aadhaar cards with voter IDs can help in removing fake and duplicate voter cards. But more research and analysis should be done by the parliamentary committee to check whether there are other reliable alternatives to this to prevent invasion of privacy.
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