As it stands right now, if you don’t need to avail of government welfare schemes, you still need an Aadhaar card to file your taxes. However, the SC has declared that it does not need to be linked to your bank account or your phone number, and any order to the contrary is unconstitutional. Unfortunately, some of you have probably already done just that, to comply with aforementioned orders. Take heart though, there is a way to de-link your Aadhaar in an effort to keep your data a little safer.
The Compendium of Regulations of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) talks about just that. Under its entry for the Aadhaar (Authentication) Regulations circular form 2016, under point 16 (5) it states, “The Aadhaar number holder may, at any time, revoke consent given to a KUA for storing his e-KYC data or for sharing it with third parties, and upon such revocation, the KUA shall delete the e-KYC data and cease any further sharing.”
For clarification, KYC here stands for “know your customer” which is basically when you verify your identity topurchase a SIM card etc. e-KYC is what happens through Aadhaar’s bio-metric system, and KUA is an agency that uses this method (which in the SIM card example would be Airtel, Reliance Jio, etc).
In addition, whichever agency you de-link your account from, they are legally obliged to follow the procedure and finish the process. So here are the basic steps you need to follow
1. Firstly, you need to call your bank or service provider’s customer care number and let them know you want to de-link your Aadhaar.
2. After that, you’ll be asked to formally declare the same in an email. If they don’t readily offer the correct email address to send it to, make it a point to ask.
3. You’ll then need to wait for a reply from the company in question, where they ask you to attach a soft-copy of your Aadhaar card. Obviously you should have a scan ready to speed this along.
4. Within 72 hours, your account should be de-linked. On the off chance it’s not, don’t hesitate to call and escalate.