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HC allows man to file I-T returns sans Aadhaar.

KOCHI: Kerala high court on Friday allowed a lawyer to file income tax returns without furnishing the Aadhaar number.

The court issued an interim order directing income tax authorities to allow Prasanth Sugathan to file I-T returns through manual filing mode without the Aadhaar number or the enrolment number, pending disposal of a petition (WP-C No. 26033/2017) filed by him.

When asked to react, an officer of Central Board of Direct Taxes said CBDT will study the order to assess its impact.

The petition said though the lawyer is a regular income tax payee and has consistently filed I-T returns, he has not enrolled for the Aadhaar scheme as he considers it to be a violation of his fundamental right to privacy.

The lawyer pointed out that enrolment in the scheme was voluntary as per an interim order issued by the Supreme Court in the case over alleged violation of right to privacy through implementation of Aadhaar.

An amendment made to Finance Act 2017, making it mandatory to quote Aadhaar number in I-T returns, was then challenged before the apex court.

While disposing of the case, the apex court had granted a partial stay whereby exemption was granted for those who have not enrolled for the Aadhaar scheme, the petition said.