MUMBAI: The Bombay HC on Friday dismissed a petition by the state seeking direction to the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) to disclose information regarding the Aadhaar card of an accused who submitted two cards with the same number but with different birth dates.

The plea, filed through the investigation officer of Pune’s Wakad police station, sought UIDAI to disclose information “including identity information and authentication data”.
“Prosecution should make an endeavour to get the birth certificate since an Aadhaar card is not proof for the purpose of conclusion of date of birth,” said a bench of Justices Revati Mohite-Dere and Gauri Godse.

After hearing the UIDAI’s representative, the judges said in compliance with the Supreme Court’s September 2018 judgment, the authority does not maintain the authentication record of any Aadhaar holder beyond 6 months.
The petition said the accused was among four booked for murder. At the time of arrest on November 27, 2020, he submitted his Aadhaar card as proof of age. The date of birth mentioned on it was January 1, 1999, showing he was 21.
On January 1, 2021, claiming to be a juvenile, he produced before the Pune sessions court another Aadhaar card showing his birth date as March 5, 2003. The state called for an ossification test (to determine age). The sessions court allowed the accused’s application and directed the Yerwada jail superintendent to produce him before the Juvenile Justice Board. The state approached the UIDAI for verification, but was turned down saying an HC order is required.
The judges expressed surprise about Aadhaar cards being forged and fabricated. “Why is it called unique? We recall in the Antilia case, one of the police officers had two Aadhaar cards and the name was the same,” said Justice Mohite-Dere. UIDAI’s advocate SK Halwasia said “there are experts who do it”.
Halwasia said there are judgments that Aadhar card is not proof of age. The judges agreed with him.

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