Aadhaar future at stake, govt seeks meeting with states

As per UIDAI records, 630 million Indians have already been issued Aadhaar cards.

Written by Subhomoy Bhattacharjee | New Delhi | Published:June 17, 2014 2:10 am
The scheme to provide a biometric identification number to all residents of India was criticised by several BJP leaders in the run-up to the elections, who alleged it provided an easy way for foreign migrants to get registered. The scheme to provide a biometric identification number to all residents of India was criticised by several BJP leaders in the run-up to the elections, who alleged it provided an easy way for foreign migrants to get registered.

The Department of Information Technology has called a meeting of state government secretaries this week for a status check on Aadhaar.

The meeting is significant because of the question marks on the continuation of the scheme under the NDA government. Prime Minister Narendra Modi last week scrapped the cabinet committee on Unique Identification Authority of India which issues Aadhaar numbers.

The scheme to provide a biometric identification number to all residents of India was criticised by several BJP leaders in the run-up to the elections, who alleged it provided an easy way for foreign migrants to get registered.

The meeting with the secretaries will throw up inputs on whether the government needs to go ahead with the Bill giving itself the right to ask for biometric and other personal details of all Indians. It will also provide a status  check on states that have rolled out the scheme aggressively.

As per UIDAI records, 630 million Indians have already been issued Aadhaar cards.

DeIT Secretary R S Sharma told The Indian Express that it was for the political executive to provide a direction on how Aadhaar and its twin project, the National Population Register, will move.

“We have called a meeting of those states where the extent of rollout of these cards has almost been completed, to decide their future course of action,” Sharma said. Sharma, who was until recently chief secretary of Jharkhand, said even that poor state had managed to largely complete the project.

Continuing the project would mean fresh funding for FY 15 by the finance ministry. The sum the government sets aside in the union budget will provide an indication of the project’s future.

It will, for instance, decide whether states would be able to retain the workforce contracted to complete the project. Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Karnataka are among the states that have done well on the scheme.

The project was meant to make programmes like the public distribution system efficient. It can potentially ensure that government benefits reach the right person, as Aadhaar numbers of subscribers can be matched with the rolls maintained by departments for verification.

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  1. N
    natarajan
    Jun 19, 2014 at 4:34 am
    PM has promised to continue the good schemes of the previous govt, and this is one of them besides RTI and RTE,He should abide by his promise.
    Reply
  2. A
    ah
    Jun 17, 2014 at 2:14 pm
    Bio Metrics is non fail-able, if u think illegals will have then any other doent will have same fait. BTW it is the corrupt system which provides fakes ....................... so ADHAAR or any other including Pport will not be dependable until the system is clean....... in short let ADHHAR be there and clean the system ........
    Reply
  3. F
    Farzan Shaikh
    Jun 18, 2014 at 10:37 am
    "As per UIDAI records, 630 million Indians have already been issued Aadhaar cards."Are you sure Mr. Nilekani that all of them are really Indians??
    Reply
  4. G
    Girish
    Jun 17, 2014 at 8:00 am
    merging aadhar with national census was a good idea. they should continue with it.
    Reply
  5. H
    Hitesh
    Jun 17, 2014 at 7:08 am
    With 63 crore citizens already covered, it would only be pragmatic to go ahead and issue Aadhars to the w potion. Simultaneously, issues relating to this unique, biometric identification of being a resident of India versus a citizen of India should be resolved by active partition of Home Ministry & RGI (NPR). It may be an good idea to bring the project under Home Ministry and give UIDAI enough teeth through an Act of parliament to carry out this exercise in place of RGI.
    Reply
  6. O
    OpinionatedOrator
    Jun 17, 2014 at 8:07 am
    If Modi ss Aadhar, then I gravely doubt his intentions to work for the welfare of the country. It was one thing which UPA did exceptionally well
    Reply
  7. L
    Lakshmi Narasimhan
    Jun 17, 2014 at 5:45 am
    Very good initiative but, it is going to die a unnatural death in the hands of BJP gov.Who is responsible for all the money spent on Aadhaar project ?
    Reply
  8. K
    Kerala Varma
    Jun 17, 2014 at 8:00 am
    630 million in the Aadhar net voluntarily and how many voted for NaMo!
    Reply
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