With the authorities facing great difficulties in identification of unclaimed bodies, the Delhi High Court has asked the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) to explain its reasons for shooting down the idea of matching the fingerprints of unidentified bodies with the biometric database.
A bench of Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice VK Rao issued notice to the UIDAI and also the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) on a petition moved by advocate Amit Sahni seeking directions to the Centre and all the states to mandatorily scan the biometrics of the unidentified bodies and match it with pre-existed biometrics/Aadhaar details so that the body can be handed over to the decesed’s family.
During the hearing, the UIDAI said it was not technically possible to match the biometrics of the unidentified body with the existing database.
The bench then asked it to file an affidavit detailing how the idea proposed in the petition was not workable.
“…Everybody deserves a decent departure and considering the decomposition of human body in 24 hours of death, sharing of Aadhaar is quite essential and effective for the benefit of respondents as well as the deceased person and his/her family,” said Sahni.
Sahni had earlier filed a petition for putting Aadhaar to use in reuniting missing persons with their families.
It was during his research on that petition that he was told by the officials of the NCRB about the difficulties they face in identifying bodies or handing it over to their families.
Sahni also prayed for the establishment of special courts for speedy disposal of cases pertaining to unidentified bodies under the Aadhaar Act on the same day or the next day, irrespective of holidays.
He has also sought directions to the governments to frame guidelines to ensure proper disposal of unidentified bodies.