Friday, September 7, 2018

Benefits of Aadhaar Card

Aadhaar is a 12 digit unique identity number (random number) which is assigned to all Indians (resident as well as nonresident) based on their demographics and biometric data (all 10 fingerprints, two iris scans and facial photograph).

According to UIDAI, "Aadhaar number is devoid of any intelligence and does not profile people based on caste, religion, income, health and geography. The Aadhaar number is a proof of identity, however, it does not confer any right of citizenship or domicile in respect of an Aadhaar number holder.

Aadhaar is a strategic policy tool for social and financial inclusion, public sector delivery reforms, managing fiscal budgets, increase convenience and promote hassle-free people-centric governance. Aadhaar can be used as a permanent Financial Address and facilitates financial inclusion of the underprivileged and weaker sections of the society and is therefore a tool of distributive justice and equality. The Aadhaar identity platform is one of the key pillars of the ‘Digital India’, wherein every resident of the country is provided with a unique identity. The Aadhaar programme has already achieved several milestones and is by far the largest biometrics based identification system in the world.

Aadhaar identity platform with its inherent features of Uniqueness, Authentication, Financial Address and e-KYC, enables the Government of India to directly reach residents of the country in delivery of various subsidies, benefits and services by using the resident’s Aadhaar number only."

Benefits of Aadhaar therefore can be enumerated as:
Aadhaar based direct benefit transfer.  The benefit transfers may include but not limited to LPG subsidy, fertilizer subsidy (for farmers), MNEGRA.
            Verification of income tax returns through Aadhaar OTP.
            Passport in 10 days.
            Opening of bank account in a few seconds.
            Quick provident fund disbursement.
            Jeevan Pramaan, i.e., life certificates for pensioners.
            Digital locker.
            Getting a new mobile number in seconds.
            For investments (reducing the chances of benami investments).
            Driving license (to avoid a person having multiple driving licenses).
            Voter card linking (to avoid duplication).

Citizens of India who for some reason might get lost (children, old, mentally challenged or a person who has memory loss after suffering shock) can be brought to an Aadhaar center, and a simple biometric scan will give the entire details of the citizen. This, to my mind, is the best side effect of having an Aadhaar number.