new pension account has also been opened in her name which she can use for saving small sums every month for her old age. If she manages to save Rs 1,000 a year in this pension account, the government would deposit Rs 1,000 into her pension account from its own budget.
The packet also contains a telephone number of a local language helpline that will answer any questions she has and also help her with insurance claims.
In the same package, Shanta also receives a prepaid card that is already linked to her Aadhaar number. To activate her card and her new social security account, she visits the Aadhaar enrollment station once more to “authenticate” herself by simply putting her thumb on a small biometric reader.
Every month thereafter, Shanta puts Rs 100 into her prepaid card or mobile wallet linked to Aadhaar. To do this, she would simply walk up to a nearby mobile prepaid recharge store or a bank correspondent (BC) outlet and “load” the cash into her prepaid account. This would work exactly like recharging her prepaid mobile phone. She would be able to do this even if she changes her job or location and use any of the nearly 20 lakh mobile recharge stores or BC (business correspondent) outlets across the country. (This, incidentally, is nearly 10 times the number of all bank and postal branches in India put together).
At the back-end, her monthly savings of Rs 100 would somehow magically flow from her prepaid account to the health insurance company, the pension fund and the life insurer on her behalf and in her name. Any excess money that she loads would remain in her prepaid card or mobile wallet.
If she needs to withdraw some cash for expenses or an emergency, Shanta would simply walk up to a bank ATM or a white-label Aadhaar-enabled ATM with her prepaid card. She would put her thumb onto a biometric reader on the ATM and withdraw the money she needs.
Back home, her husband, who has an Aadhaar number now, also gets a new, Aadhar-linked pension, insurance and prepaid account. He begins transferring Rs 100 per month from his MGNREGA benefits to his social security account every month. He also receives Rs 1,000 from the government into his pension account every year.
Many years later, when Shanta is old and no longer able to work, she returns to her little village far