“As per Section 29 of the Aadhaar Act, the biometrics data collected by UIDAI can be used only for the purpose of generating Aadhaar and for authentication of identity of the Aadhaar holders and cannot be used for any other purpose.
This is referring to some reports published in certain section of media about purported use of Aadhaar biometric data for the purpose of crime investigation and in that regard it has clarified that the use of or access to Aadhaar biometric data for criminal investigation is not permissible under Section 29 of the Aadhaar Act, 2016,” the UIDAI said in a statement.
The NCRB Director on Thursday had said that limited access to Aadhaar data was needed to be given to police for the purpose of catching first time offenders and for identification of unidentified bodies. “At present around 50 lakh cases were registered every year in the country and most of them committed by first time offenders who leave their fingerprints, which would not be available in police records,” the NCRB Chief had said at the 19th All India Conference of Directors of Finger Prints Bureau in Hyderabad. “There is need for access to Aadhaar data to police for the purpose of investigation. This is essential because 80 to 85 per cent of the criminals every year are first time offenders with no records with the police. “But they also leave their fingerprints while committing crime there is need for limited access to Aadhaar, so that we can catch them,” he said.
The UIDAI however said that Section 33 of the Aadhaar Act however allows a very limited exception and permits use of or access to Aadhaar biometric data in cases involving national security only after pre-authorization by an oversight committee headed by the Cabinet Secretary.
“This is also the consistent stand taken by Union of India in the ongoing Aadhaar case in the Supreme Court. It may be noted that based on this legal position, UIDAI has never shared any biometric data with any crime investigating agency. It may be underlined here that when Mumbai High Court gave orders to share biometric data with an investigating agency in a particular case, the matter was taken up to the Supreme Court which stayed that order,” UIDAI said in its statement.