Aadhaar linkage to facilitate the cleaning of electoral roll: Govt

BL New Delhi Bureau | | Updated on: Dec 21, 2021

Parliament passed Election Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2021

Aadhaar linkage will facilitate elector registration in the location at which they are ‘ordinarily resident’, a government official said on Tuesday, as the Parliament passed the Election Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2021, that seeks to link the electoral roll data with Aadhaar ecosystem.

Passage of the Bill saw strong protest by the Opposition in both offices. While their demand to send the Bill to the Standing Committee was rejected in the Lok Sabha on Monday, the Opposition members staged a walkout from the Upper House after their demands were rejected again.

Electoral reforms

A government official said the Bill incorporates various electoral reforms which have been discussed for a long time. Registration in electoral rolls is done based on an application by a person, eligible to be registered as a voter.

“This Bill has a provision whereby the new applicant may voluntarily provide Aadhaar number along with the application for the purpose of identity. No application will be rejected on the grounds that Aadhaar number has not been provided,” he explained.

Cleaning electoral roll

Further, the official claimed that linking Aadhaar with electoral roll will solve one of the major problems in electoral database management which is multiple enrolment of the same person at different places. This may be due to the frequent shifting of residence by electors and getting enrolled in the new place without deleting the previous enrolment. Thus, “the possibility of electors whose names appear in more than one electoral roll or at times more than once in the same electoral roll can be removed,” he said.

Also read: CA amendment Bill referred to Parliamentary Standing Committee

He also mentioned that once the linkage is achieved, the electoral roll data system will instantly alert the existence of previous registration(s) whenever a person applies for new registration. “This will help in cleaning the electoral roll to a great extent and facilitate elector registration in the location at which they are ‘ordinarily resident’,” he said.

On Monday, while moving the Bill in the Lok Sabha, Law Minister Kiren Rijiju had said the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice, in its 105th Report, had stated this linkage will purify electoral rolls and consequently reduce electoral malpractices. “Accordingly, the Committee has directed that the relevant laws, in this regard, should be amended at the earliest and Action Taken Report is required to be forwarded to the Committee, was passed by a voice vote after a brief discussion during which some opposition members demanded that it be referred to a parliamentary panel for scrutiny,” Rijiju had said.

Published on December 21, 2021
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