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Haryana

Posted at: Aug 11, 2018, 12:01 AM; last updated: Aug 11, 2018, 12:01 AM (IST)

HSSC to match fingerprints, Aadhaar cards of candidates

Direction issued for selection processes other than that of teachers
HSSC to match fingerprints, Aadhaar cards of candidates

Saurabh Malik

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10

The Punjab and Haryana High Court has made it clear that the Haryana Staff Selection Commission (HSSC) will carry out comparison of fingerprints with Aadhaar cards of candidates to establish their identity in selection processes other than that of teachers.

Justice Amol Rattan Singh made it clear that the direction would be subject to final orders by the Supreme Court regarding “mandatory reference to Aadhaar cards for different purposes by the government”.

Justice Amol Rattan Singh added that the order would be treated as overruled if mandatory linkage or usage of Aadhaar cards was not approved by the Supreme Court regarding selection processes. As such, the HSSC chairperson would file a report once the Supreme Court pronounced its judgment.

In his order on an application by the HSSC, Justice Amol Rattan Singh referred to an affidavit by chairperson Deepti Umashanker on Aadhaar authentication.

It said software application for performing the task generated an authentication packet using Aadhaar number and biometric data of individual to be verified. It was sent to the UIDAI server for authentication.

Justice Amol Rattan Singh added that the court, in an earlier order, had expressed satisfaction with the process, but it could be implemented for future selection.

The previous experience of manual fingerprint check from forensic science laboratory was not a happy one as the selection processes at that time were put on hold for a long time.

Justice Amol Rattan Singh observed that in his opinion, the prayer for physical comparison of fingerprint or thumb impressions of successful candidates with those taken at the time of the Haryana Teachers Eligibility Test (HTET) was impractical, especially as it was conducted at different points of time since 2008, with ‘proper’ biometric data not available for all selections as contended.

Justice Amol Rattan Singh, during the course of hearing, asked the state counsel to explain why fingerprints and thumb impressions taken in the HTET held in November and December 2017 and subsequent examinations would be subjected to scrutiny by the UIDAI to establish the candidate’s identity for competitive examination with the HTET as base criterion.

The state counsel, in response, submitted that digital biometrics was made compulsory in the HTET and any other examination since November 2017. Comparison with the UIDAI database, as such, could not be made prior to that.

Justice Amol Rattan Singh observed that in all ongoing selection processes by the HSSC, where the HTET had been taken by the candidates prior to November 2017, fingerprint matching need not be done by the commission unless it developed a methodology.

“But all selection processes where the HTET-2017 is the base test or criteria for selection as regards those candidates who had taken the test November 2017 onwards, the fingerprint matching exercise shall be done as has been given in the chairperson’s affidavit,” the Bench ruled.

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