There has been much debate over the importance of Aadhaar Card in the country and how it can or cannot act as a prime document of personal identification. Introduced by the UPA government in 2010, Aadhaar Card is a 12-digit unique identification number provided to Indian citizen by the Central government. Uniqueness of the same is issued and maintained by Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI). Aadhaar card is basically an essential document issued by the UIDAI after recording and verifying the fundamental details (both biometric and demographic) of every resident Indian citizen. However, the document is not meant to replace the existing identification documents like PAN (Permanent Account Number), passport, driving license etc.
The importance of Aadhaar Cards have increased ever since the Bharatiya Janata Party came into power. But the move throttled up after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s demonetisation move announced in December, last year. As the BJP government is all guns to move India towards being a cashless economy, the ruling party now plans to digitise the country with Aadhaar Cards being the spine of identification. Just like the Social Security Number in the US, PM Modi-led government aims at making Aadhaar cards, a unique biometric identification document that provide details of every citizen with a mere thumb impression.
Here are all important sectors where having an Aadhaar Card has been made mandatory by the Central government:
1. Income Tax Returns:
On March 21, the Central government had announced that Aadhaar number will be necessary for July 1, 2017 for filing income tax returns. This new proposal was made through an amendment to the Financial Bill.
2. PAN Cards
Unlike before, now one would need an Aadhaar number along with Income tax returns details to apply for a Permanent Account Number (PAN) from July 1, 2017. As per the new directed made by the government, those PAN cards not liked to Aadhaar will be considered invalid.
Watch @NandanNilekani the man who set up Aadhaar on Aadhaar controversy, In conversation with @virsanghvi. #News360 @ArunodayM pic.twitter.com/skBEB7shcr
— News18 (@CNNnews18) March 27, 2017
3. Mobile Numbers
This is a big move made by the government. Now you would need an Aadhaar card to get a new mobile number, both prepaid and postpaid). All telecom companies will now re-verify its existing and new customers via an Aadhaar based E-KYC (know you customer) process.
4. Driving Licence
To deal with the problem of one person having two or more driving licence under their names, the government has now made it mandatory to have a Aadhaar card to apply for a new driving licence. Reports also suggests that in order to renew an existing licence Aadhaar card will be required.
5. Various welfare and non-welfare schemes
Apart from these, Aadhaar card is also made mandatory in various welfare and non-welfare schemes including mid-day meals, workers for availing house subsidies, farmers wanting to take crop insurance benefit, for women to avail vocational training, loans and other schemes, for booking tickets on Indian Railways online and many others.