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GOI may introduce National Identification Authority of India Bill, 2013 in the winter session of Parliament
Nov 08, 2013

The central government had introduced the National Identification Authority of India Bill, 2010 in Rajya sabha  to issue a unique identification number (called Aadhaar) to every resident of India.  The number shall be linked to a resident’s demographic and biometric information. So far, about 47 crore 85 lakh Aadhaars have been issued and the enrollment process is in full swing to meet the target. The Speaker, Lok Sabha in consultation with the Chairman, Rajya Sabha had referred the Bill to the Standing Committee on Finance. In the meantime, the UIDAI has been functioning under an executive order issued by the Government in January 2009, establishing UIDAI as an Attached Office of the Planning Commission. 

Thus now GOI is planning to reintroduce the bill in the Parliament. The Bill proposes to constitute a statutory authority to be called the National Identification Authority of India and lay down the powers and functions of the Authority, the framework for issuing Aadhaar numbers, defines offences and penalties and matters incidental thereto through an Act of Parliament.

The provisions of the Bill are: 

  • The Bill seeks to establish the National Identification Authority of India (NIAI) to issue unique identification numbers (called ‘Aadhaar’) to residents of India.

  • Every person residing in India is entitled to obtain an Aadhaar number after furnishing relevant demographic and biometric information.  No information related to race, religion, caste, language, income or health shall be collected. 

  • The information collected shall be stored in the Central Identities Data Repository.  This shall be used to provide authentication services.

  • Sharing of data is prohibited except by the consent of the resident; by a court order; or for national security, if directed by an authorised official of the rank of Joint Secretary or above.

  • The Bill also establishes an Identity Review Committee which shall monitor the usage patterns of Aadhaar numbers.  

  • Authentication of the Aadhaar number of an Aadhaar number holder in relation to his biometric information and demographic information subject to such conditions and on payment of such fees as may be specified by regulations;

Benefit of AADHAR to Government:

i) Can verify that a genuine beneficiary is claiming the benefit (at a Banking Correspondent for money or at a PDS outlet for grain); and,

ii) Can provide services in every nook and corner of the country as  long as connectivity is there.

Benefit of AADHAR to individual:

i) Convenience - a resident can get access to services close to where they are;

ii) Mobility - a resident can access services throughout the country; and,

iii) Empowerment - since the resident has a choice of outlets for a particular service (go to any BC to withdraw money or any PDS outlet to withdraw grain), the bargaining power shifts to the resident. This also reduces corruption.



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