NRIs and PIOs are not required to link bank accounts and other services with Aadhaar, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) said today, while instructing various implementation agencies to work out a mechanism to verify the status of such individuals. It said the Prevention of Money laundering Rules 2017 and the Income Tax Act clearly stipulate that the linking of bank accounts and PAN respectively, “is for those persons who are eligible to enrol for Aadhaar”. It said all central ministries and departments, state governments and other implementation agencies should bear in mind that Aadhaar as an identity document can be sought only from those eligible for it under Aadhaar Act, and that most NRIs/PIOs/ OCIs may not be eligible for its enrolment. The Aadhaar-issuing body said several representations had been received about problems faced by Non Resident Indians (NRIs), Person of Indian Origin (PIOs) and Overseas Citizens of India (OCI) where Aadhaar was being demanded with regard to various services and benefits.
It said that some Departments and implementing agencies were asking NRIs/OCIs/PIOs to submit or link their Aadhaar for availing services and benefits, despite the fact that they were not entitled for the 12-digit biometric identifier. “The laws regarding submitting/linking of Aadhaar for availing the services/benefits applies to the residents as per the Aadhaar Act 2016… Most of the NRIs/PIOs/OCIs may not be eligible for Aadhaar enrolment as per Aadhaar Act…,” the UIDAI said in a note dated November 15 to central ministries and states. It has further instructed the implementing agency to device a mechanism “to ascertain the genuineness of status of such NRIs/PIOs/OCIs”.