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Mumbai lags behind in enrolling citizens for UID

The Centre’s Unique Identification project is seeing a rather slow start in the city.

Written by Stuti Shukla | Mumbai |
May 23, 2011 3:07:17 am

The Centre’s Unique Identification (UID) project is seeing a rather slow start in the city. More than four months after centres were opened across Mumbai,only about seven per cent of the citizens have got themselves enrolled. According to the provisional figures of Census 2011,the city has an estimated population of 1.25 crore. Of these,only 9.10 lakh citizens have applied for the 12-digit UID number and card,according to data updated till May 12.

As per the deadline set by the Centre,30 per cent of the population should have been covered by the end of this month. The process began on January 26 and has to be winded up by March 2012. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation,which is carrying out the project,set up 142 UID centres on municipal school premises. Each centre has about five machines,where a maximum of 250 registrations can be done per day. This means about 39 lakh enrollments could have been completed by now.

BMC’s disaster management department was entrusted with the responsibility of coordinating efforts in Mumbai. Chief Disaster Control Officer Mahesh Narvekar said the four IT firms (Tetrasoft,WEP solutions,WIPRO and Karvy),which are recording iris impressions and fingerprints through biometrics,also have to go door to door and make citizens aware of the scheme. “The Centre is paying a hefty sum to these agencies. For every person enrolled,the agency will get Rs 250,” said Narvekar.

An official requesting anonymity said the door-to-door outreach programme for a city like Mumbai will require more concerted efforts. “Since it is the Centre’s scheme,not enough efforts are being taken on the part of the civic body to urge people to come forward and enroll themselves,” admitted an official.

At 1,03,200,the S ward — including areas such as Bhandup,Vikhroli and Kanjurmarg — has the highest number of enrolments till now. The C Ward has seen a poor response with just about 6,800 people enrolling for the programme. “We are hoping that the response will pick up eventually. We plan to give a push to the exercise in October and November,” said Narvekar.

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