Till the last decade, a huge number of people in India had no official ID of any kind. Being without an official ID card led to many complications for the general public as well as for the government. The lack of a common and authentic ID was creating difficulties and delays in receiving services like opening a bank account, avail a loan, get a driving license and so on. To avail any kind of government or even non-government services, one needs to prove his/her identity. Till a few years back one needs to furnish a number of documents like address proof, birth proof, identity proof etc which would often lead to confusion due to discrepancies while synchronising all the documents.
Keeping all this hardship in consideration, the GOI has launched Aadhaar Card, in April 2010 with a vision of providing a common, comprehensive, authentic and secured identity proof to its residents.
What is Aadhaar Card?
Aadhaar is a 12 digit unique identification number which is issued by UIDAI (Unique Identification Authority of India) to the citizens residing in India. An Aadhaar card is a universal identity proof which has become a necessary document for availing various services like opening a bank account, availing personal loan, getting a new sim card or a PAN card, filing income tax returns etc. Till present, more than 90% of Indians have enrolled themselves with Aadhaar and hence it has become the biggest biometric database on Earth. Though the point to be remembered that Aadhaar is a proof of residence, not a proof of citizenship.
The Objectives of Launching Aadhaar
- a) Providing universal identity to every Indian citizen
- b) To provide an all in one identity card which will work as an identity proof, address proof and age proof.
- c) Eliminating the need of mediators while availing government subsidies.
The Benefits of Having an Aadhaar Card?
The benefits of Aadhaar card are many in number. An Aadhaar card can meaningfully make your life comparatively easier. The easy availability and the universal acceptance of this identity proof has made most of the daily life tasks handy. Moreover, because of the unique number, the corruption has reduced to a great extent. Here are the most important benefits of Aadhaar-
Jan Dhan Yojana: If you want to avail the benefits of Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) then the Aadhaar card is considered as the only document sufficient to open the bank account. Although you one can open PMJDY account by furnishing other documents too.
Passport in 10 Days: Having an Aadhaar card will make you get a passport in just 10 days. This is great news for the Indians who need to travel abroad in an urgency. Under this format, police verification will be done at a later date. Additionally, the rule of government says that an Aadhaar card is compulsory for a passport.
Voter Card Linking: The voter card linking with Aadhaar card has been implemented in order to eliminate bogus voters. When the Aadhaar card is linked with voter card, it would become impossible for a voter to have multiple voter ID cards. The illegal use of voter’s ID card can also be caught as while casting vote, it is required to be present in the polling booth with the Aadhaar card for linking both the documents as well as authentication.
Opening New Bank Account: A bank account for every adult is a must have. Opening a bank account has now become faster and easier with the Aadhaar KYC verification. Unlike a few years back, one need to provide only one document which is Aadhaar card. An Aadhaar card itself works as identity proof, age proof and address proof.
Digital Life Certificate– The Digital Life Certificate is just another name of The Jeevan Praman for Pensioners. The Link of Aadhaar card with the mentioned certificate has ensured that the pensioner doesn’t need to be physically present for receiving the pension for the continuation of their scheme. The details and the authentication of the beneficiary can be digitally accessed by the agency through their Aadhaar Card numbers.
The Importance of Aadhaar Card in Availing a Loan
Though it has not yet announced mandatory for the loan borrowers to provide Aadhaar card still it can make the loan processing much easier. The time and effort which the bank officials had to put in order to verify the documents of the loan applicant have been reduced drastically after accepting Aadhaar card as ID proof. The customer verification in online loans is done with e-KYC by taking Aadhaar card as the basic document. The use of Aadhaar card in a loan is the base of modern lending. The instant loans which are claimed to be disbursed within hours become possible because of the online verification of the applicant via e-KYC. Online loans which are better known as instant loans can even be availed by sharing the scanned copy of your Aadhaar card as the only document to prove identity.
The Security Concerns with Aadhaar Card
After getting to know all the benefits of Aadhaar card, now it is time to know how secure is your personal information. As we are to link almost all our important documents such as bank accounts, mobile phone, PAN card etc with Aadhaar, it is a general concern that if the data leaks we can be cheated or threatened by any third party.
Keeping the concern in consideration, the GOI has recently introduced Virtual IDs to protect privacy. The Virtual ID is a 16 digit number mapped to the Aadhaar number of the concerned person. The Virtual ID can be generated by the cardholder from the UIDAI website. With the help of this virtual ID, the person need not share the 12 digit Aadhaar number for authentication purpose. The Virtual ID gives only essential information such as name, address, photograph etc. With the help of this Virtual ID number, no one can get the original Aadhaar number of the person hence the confidential information can be kept safe. A Virtual ID is not permanent like Aadhaar card. A person can create it as many as times he /she wants. Once you create a new Virtual ID, the previous one will become invalid automatically. While the companies need to authenticate your identity for any purpose, they would get the virtual ID and receive a UID token that confirms it is mapped to your Aadhaar number.