Aadhaar mystery: How many 'residents' actually have the UID number?
The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) claims that it has issued 103 crore Aadhaar numbers to Indian residents and almost 97% of them are adults. On the other hand, Ujjivan Financial Services, one of the most prominent names in microfinance segment, says just 77% of its customers have Aadhaar as on 15 July 2016. This is interesting. Because, Aadhaar came into existence under the garb of providing identification to those poor people who do not have any kind of ID. Since Ujjivan operates in microfinance segment, most of its customers are supposed to have the Aadhaar numbers if we consider the claims from UIDAI. But that is not the case.
 
 
 
 
We would presume that 100% of Ujjivan’s customers should have Aadhaar. They are borrowers who need to clear know your customer (KYC) norms. And all finance companies and banks have been waxing eloquent how Aadhaar has made life so easy for them. So, how come as high as 23% Ujjivan customers do not have the Aadhaar? Or is it possible that the claims by UIDAI are overhyped? 
 
Quite possible. Especially, if one were to look at the history of UIDAI and how it goofs up with numbers and figures. For example, UIDAI conducted a proof of the concept trial of the Aadhaar project between March and June 2010 neglecting the basic principle of pilot testing and size of sample. For over 120 crore UID numbers, they have used data from just 20,000 people, in pairs, as the sample and have on the basis of these results, went ahead with the UID number through the 'Aadhaar' project. 
 
On the false positive identification rate (FPIR), the authority had said, "We will look at the point where the FPIR (i.e. the possibility that a person is mistaken to be a different person) is 0.0025%". This means, for every 1 lakh comparisons, there would be two and a half false positives. On a large scale, it means for a population of over 120 crore, there would be 18 lakh crore false positives! (Read: How UIDAI goofed up pilot test results to press forward with UID scheme)
 
Coming back to Aadhaar, last week united opposition members disrupted proceedings in the Rajya Sabha, while protesting against making the UID number mandatory for availing government benefits like subsidised LPG, PDS supplies and pensions. Ram Gopal Yadav from the Samajwadi Party (SP) said the Centre has issued instructions to state governments to stop ration card benefits, pensions and subsidised LPG to those not having Aadhaar. As much as 40% of the population do not have an Aadhaar card and the move will hit the poor hard, he said (emphasis added). 
 
Dilip Tirkey of the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) told the upper house that 20% of the population in Odisha do not have Aadhaar number and the instruction from the Centre will only create problems for the poor (emphasis added).
 
The biggest shocker came from Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, who said that 85% of the population have got Aadhaar, and the penetration can be pushed only with the effort of the state government. The question is how many citizens have actually received an Aadhaar number? It is 96.7% as claimed by UIDAI, or 85% as stated by the Minister? Or much lower, as charged by the Parliamentarians?
 
As if the white elephant of Aadhaar was not enough, the claims and counter claims are making it a story of an elephant and four blind persons with everyone giving their own numbers.  
 
Meanwhile, the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG), in a report tabled in the Parliament on 2 August 2016, had said that UIDAI had granted undue favour to Wipro Ltd in a maintenance contract worth Rs4.92 crore. "The UIDAI, in contravention of the provisions of the contract, extended undue favour to the vendor (Wipro) and incurred an avoidable expenditure of Rs4.92 crore on annual maintenance contract of the equipment for a period covered under warranty/free maintenance," the CAG report stated.
 
"The UIDAI did not route its advertisements through the Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity in accordance with the advertisement policy of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. This led to loss of Rs1.41 crore as the eligible discount was not availed," the report added.
 
Wipro, however, has disagreed with the findings of CAG. "We disagree with the findings of the (CAG) report that UIDAI extended undue favour to us. We draw attention to the latter's response in the report that the acceptance of goods was given by the competent authority in UIDAI after commissioning the equipment," the software company said in a statement.
 
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COMMENTS

Prem Gupta

2 years ago

It is forced by government to link mobile numbers with Aadhaar but unfortunately my finger prints of all the ten fingers didn’t authenticated my Aadhaar no

Sukanya Rao

3 years ago

In order to get a voters card I recall spending a full six hours waiting in the queue and much to my dismay I didn't receive the card. This happened about 25 years ago. Considering the importance of a voters card, I went again and waited for 12 hours in the queue. The waiting time would have been 8 hours had their machinery not broken down. Beyond the bad photo which looks like a compressed version of my face, my address is incorrect. Apart from voting I hadn't used it for any purpose. So when I read that the Supreme Court said that Aadhar card is purely voluntary I was happy and decided that I could live without one. But my happiness is short lived because I am slowly realizing that it is actually mandatory. My gas agency has called me this time third year in a row (apart from innumerable reminders) to submit my aadhar card and I don't have one. I have stopped receiving my gas subsidy despite my submitting the voters card. I am worried that I may stop receiving the gas cylinder itself. The Karnataka Education department has made it mandatory for all school children to have an aadhar card. I am receiving reminders since last year to submit my son's aadhar card from his school because the education department insists that all children must have one. I have heard rumours that without aadhar card, children may not be allowed admission into schools and colleges or they may not be able to receive their scholastic results. All this has got me worried and I decided to apply for an aadhar card finally. The government is arm twisting citizens to get an aadhar card despite the Supreme Court's ruling. I have also heard cases where the biometric machines were unable to read people's fingerprints and hence the aadhar card hasn't been useful. I am unable to understand the purpose an aadhar card will serve which is beyond a voters card, pan card, Passport, ration card, and various other cards that we have for ID proof and Address proof. I am sure a few years from now, we'll have to go through another card process.

Prakash Basrur

3 years ago

Are we not under the scanner of thousands of "on-line" media since last decade ? Google, WhatsApp , FaceBook et al have been snooping on our "Kundalis" 24/7/365 for many years ! Who has stopped those "Orwellian Big Bros" till now ? Are we going to stop using the Internet and Computers all together because of this threat ? Aadhar is another such "Ghost" we have to take it or leave it ! "Jai Ho !"

Prakash Basrur

3 years ago

Are we not under the scanner of thousands of "on-line" media since last decade ? Google, WhatsApp , FaceBook et al have been snooping on our "Kundalis" 24/7/365 for many years ! Who has stopped those "Orwellian Big Bros" till now ? Are we going to stop using the Internet and Computers all together because of this threat ? Aadhar is another such "Ghost" we have to take it or leave it ! "Jai Ho !"

Ralph Rau

3 years ago

UID is a dangerous concept which places the citizen at risk of continuous surveillance and encourages authoritarianism. George Orwell's Big Brother come true.

This is the reason citizens of developed nations have steadfastly opposed a similar biometric or Universal ID scheme.

Use of UID must be limited to subsidies for the poor especially since Rajee Gandhi acknowledged that 85% of welfare spending never reaches the recipient.

Nitin Bhatia

3 years ago

At least get your own numbers right before writing such a rant filled and poorly researched article.
" the possibility that a person is mistaken to be a different person) is 0.0025%". This means, for every 1 lakh comparisons, there would be two and a half false positives. On a large scale, it means for a population of over 120 crore, there would be 18 lakh crore false positives!"

Correct figure should be 30000 which is minuscule compared to the overall population.

NARENDRA NEGANDHI

3 years ago

even in writing an article of this size you make a blunder mentioning a figure of 18 lakh crore, you expect that such a huge tasks of UIDAI is to be done without mistake? AAdhar has to be made compoulsory & even if with an accuracy level of say 95% it will help india in a huge way. Let us all support rather than finding trivias about it

Anil Kumar

3 years ago

With such a big project, the overlaps / gaps is only logical. In due course, I think the juggernaut of enrollment will cover most of the most.

Hemant Chitale

3 years ago

It is for Residents. Don't use the word "Citizens" in your article. Going by advertisements on the Internet, Non-Residents also have been obtaining Aadhaar numbers.

ANIL KHEMKA

3 years ago

I HAD APPLIED 5 AADHAR FOR MY FAMILY.
HAVE RECEIVED ONLY 2 TILL DATE WITH NO COMMUNICATION ON THE FATE OF THE OTHERS SINCE 3 YEARS WHEN THE BIOMETRICS WERE TAKEN

P L Despande pawar

3 years ago

This is criticism for the sake of criticism.CAG's observation of undue benefit to Wipro is prima facie ridiculous.
May be there are slippages but you can't overlook the execution of milestone !

P L Despande pawar

3 years ago

This is criticism for the sake of criticism.CAG's observation of undue benefit to Wipro is prima facie ridiculous.
May be there are slippages but you can't overlook the execution of milestone !

SuchindranathAiyerS

3 years ago

When it comes to Statistics, the BJP is just as much a liar as the Khangress. Primarily because, like Aadhar, all the BJP policies are the same as that of the Sonia-Manmohan led Parivar that loots together to stay together. More importantly, it is the same rusted iron framework of incompetent, corrupt, Babu-Cop-Milard-Crony Kleptocrats comprising, for the most part, of those Constitutionally Certified to be Congenitally Backward.

REPLY

R Varadarajan

In Reply to SuchindranathAiyerS 3 years ago

How right you are !!! Everybody is on publicity drive !!!

MOHAN SIROYA

3 years ago

What is stated in the article appears to be true. The efficacy of linking ADHAAR no. to all other Bank or Income Tax KYC/Returns is not coming thru'. After hair splitting investigation as to the denial of
Aadhaar no. to other Govt. departments/KYC, especially with Income tax department is being ejected simply for the reason that ,While the PAN has Self name , Father name and also father an and not Husband name in case of a married woman. Aadhaar was not created on these parameters but only on self name followed by Fathers name separately. Because of this separation, Income tax
department is rejecting the linkage .



If it was necessary that we should register the name exactly as per PAN details, why the UIDAI authorities accepted name of the registrant without having Father's name in the middle of his name as per PAN card. In fact Pan Card was submitted as a prof of ID to make the Aadhaar Card.
Surpisingly till today, while maie Aadhar Card they did not inist on name exactly as given in PAN Card. Even a driving licence is accepted as proof of name and address, which again is different than given in PAN card. All such discrepancies make a mockery of efficacy of this linkage Tamaasha

REPLY

R Varadarajan

In Reply to MOHAN SIROYA 3 years ago

The major issue is that the persons who are involved with the ground level operations are not totally involved - for reasons best known to them and to their employers. This created endless problems for the residents and the correction of details become even more difficult.

M Muralidharan

3 years ago

There are many who have AADHAR and dont want to register the same in any bank or other Govt. places for their own ideas. Hence, the nos. registered with the Govt. Depts. can never be the correct one as not everyone would have used it in many places or all places as required.

Decoding good governance in the Aadhaar Bill
Arun Jaitley’s “Money” Bill will immortalise his contribution to good governance and ensure that subsidies, benefits and services will be ‘targeted’ to ‘intended’ beneficiaries
 
The Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Bill, 2016 presented by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in the Lok Sabha is on its way to becoming a law ignoring concerns raised by opposition parties as well as citizens and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and even the Supreme Court. The 14-day period between tabling a Money Bill in the Rajya Sabha and it being considered as cleared by both Houses of Parliament has started as far as the Aadhaar Bill is concerned, despite strong protests from the Opposition. 
 
Here are some of the serious concerns on the Aadhaar (Money) Bill…
 
What is your identity under the Bill?
  1. Sorry, the Bill does not define your identity, address or any authority which is responsible to certify it.
  2. Section 2(n) defines that you can construct identity information for anyone by assigning an Aadhaar number, biometric and demographic information. Section 2 (a) explains that an Aadhaar number itself is a random number issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) on receipt of the demographic and biometric information.
  3. The UIDAI neither verifies the applicant or his information nor certifies it. It does not even store and archive the original application form for obtaining an Aadhaar number filed by any resident.
  4. Yes, you are right to be worried that this number is meaningless and does not prove a person’s identity, address or even existence.
 
Immunity from punishment
  1. If you are an Enrolment Agency or a Registrar, you would have submitted demographic and biometric information and received the Aadhaar number corresponding to the information you submitted to the UIDAI. You are therefore in possession of identity information as specified in the Aadhaar Bill. 
  2. Most likely you did not inform those you enrolled, as required under section 3(2)(a), of the manner in which the information shall be used. Of course, you did not know, you still do not. 
  3. Most likely you did not inform those you enrolled, as required under section 3(2)(b), the nature of recipients with whom the information is intended to be shared during authentication. You did not know, nor do you know now. 
  4. Most likely you did not inform those you enrolled, as required under section 3(2)(c), about the right to access information, the procedure for making requests for such access, and details of the person or department in-charge to whom such requests can be made. You did not know, do you now? Do you know what information can be accessed by whom? Is there information of who accessed information linked to the Aadhaar number with the UIDAI? Or information about who used it for authentication, when and where?
  5. If you are an agency delivering any subsidy, benefit or service, you too would already have collected identity information for authentication before delivering the subsidy, benefit or service.
  6. Most likely you did not inform those you collected the information from, as required under section 8(3)(a), of the nature of information that may be accessible to you upon authentication. Of course, you did not know, you still do not. 
  7. Most likely you did not inform those you collected the information from, as required under section 8(3)(b), the uses to which you may put the information received during authentication. You did not know, nor do you know now. 
  8. Most likely you did not inform those you collected the information from, as required under section 8(3)(c), about their alternatives to submission of identity information. You did not know, do you now? 
  9. According to section 41 of the Aadhaar Bill you have already committed an offence that is punishable with imprisonment, which may extend to one year or with a fine, which may extend to Rs1 lakh, or with both.
  10. You can breathe easy as section 43(1) indemnifies you as long as you prove your ignorance or claim to have done all due diligence under the MoU you signed with UIDAI to prevent such offence.
 
Rights to colonise the Consolidated Fund of India
  1. Section 4(3) of the Bill allows any Aadhaar number, in physical or electronic form subject to authentication and other conditions, to be accepted as proof of identity of the Aadhaar number holder for any purpose. 
  2. This does away with the requirement of the physical presence of any person who may be the holder of an Aadhaar number. In fact, it does away with the requirement that the person even exists. 
  3. Section 7 of the Bill states that the government may, for the purpose of establishing identity of an individual as a condition for receipt of a subsidy, benefit or service require that such individual undergo authentication, or furnish proof of possession of Aadhaar number or in the case of an individual to whom no Aadhaar number has been assigned, such individual make an application for enrolment. 
  4. If you are an Enrolment Agency, Registrar or an agency delivering any subsidy, benefit or service, you are already at advantage. You have all the Aadhaar numbers you require to submit identity information or Aadhaar numbers and encash subsidy, benefit or services. 
  5. When you encash their subsidy, benefit or service to your very own “targeted” accounts, you can even claim to have authenticated the Aadhaar numbers against whom you claimed the subsidy, benefit or service. Not only is authentication not happening anywhere, but even if it were, no one is maintaining a record of your having authenticated and verifying or auditing your Authentication transactions. Not only is such an audit beyond the requisite variety of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), even if the CAG did that, they have no way to establish any of your Aadhaar numbers as corresponding to real or imaginary persons. Ashby's law of requisite variety requires that the CAG would need to have at least as much variety as turned out by the authentication transactions of each agency. If this is not possible, the CAG cannot certify the authentication transactions. Rest assured no one has verified or audited the Aadhaar numbers to check if they were allotted to real or imaginary persons. 
  6. Since the UIDAI does not even hold an archive of the original forms filled by applicants, even if the formidable costs of such an exercise were spent, it is unlikely that they ever can. Even if the really clever auditor tracked each Aadhaar you used as a fake, section 47(1) prohibits courts from taking cognizance of any offence punishable under this Bill, save on a complaint made by the UIDAI. Even if the UIDAI did make a complaint, section 43(1) has already indemnified you if you can prove this offence was committed without your knowledge or that you had exercised all due diligence to prevent such offence. 
  7. This means that you can now colonise the Consolidated Fund of India. No wonder it is the “Money” Bill.
  8. You are now part of the exclusive club that will have control of lakhs of crores of rupees, lives of the 130 crore Indians, their properties, their existence and they cannot even take you to court or convict you for crimes by identity theft.
  9. Welcome to the destruction of the Democratic Republic of India.
 
The citizen is an unnecessary evil
  1. If you happen to be a citizen, through section 3(1) of the Bill you have just been entitled to obtain an Aadhaar number by submitting your demographic information and biometric information by undergoing the process of enrolment.
  2. Section 7 makes Aadhaar mandatory for obtaining any subsidy, benefit or service. 
  3. Never mind that you already may have any or all of permanent account number (PAN) card, ration card, passport, driver's license, electors photo identity or voter card (EPIC) and were getting your subsidies, benefits or services using these ever since India got independence. Never mind that even 99.97 percent of those who have the Aadhaar have had at least two of these IDs.
  4. If you already have the Aadhaar number, it is too early to smile and say look at how cool governance has become. According to section 8(1) the UIDAI shall perform authentication of your Aadhaar number submitted by any requesting entity (agency promising you the subsidy, benefit or service), in relation to your biometric information or demographic information, subject to such conditions and on payment of such fees and in such manner as may be specified by the UIDAI. Therefore, if you do pass the demographic challenge, there may be a biometric one. Not only will your demographic information change in your life, but so also will your biometric. So passing this step may not be as easy as it sounds. If you pass, then there may be other unspecified conditions and unspecified charges that have to be paid in unspecified ways. Needless to say this may change from time to time and for each subsidy, benefit and service. 
  5. If at any step you feel unequal, experience injustice or want to seek redressal of your pains, sorry, no one is listening. There is no channel to restore your dignity.
  6. You do not matter if your Aadhaar does not authenticate. If your demographic information is not updated or if your biometric fails, you can bid goodbye to your subsidies, benefits and services.
  7. Under section 47(1) of this Bill you may not even go to a court of law. Please learn to accept the government’s sentiment that raising such issues in courts does not serve any Public Interest. 
  8. It may be quite understandable if the time, psychological and money cost of the process deters you from holding your claim to subsidies, benefits or services. Please do not worry, there are enough Aadhaar numbers enrolled to replace yours and claim the amount. Just think of it as the cost of good governance. How can the government write off a few thousand crores already spent on the UIDAI project when lakhs of crores from the Consolidated Fund of India are at stake to “targeted” beneficiaries?
 
Identity crimes do not exist
  1. Section 57 empowers anyone to use the Aadhaar number for establishing the identity of an individual for any purpose. 
  2. Don’t be surprised if your online grocer, Uber or Flipkart ask for your Aadhaar just as your banks have been doing for some time now. 
  3. Once they have your identification information they can undertake virtual transactions on your behalf. For example someone can sell you stuff you did not order by using your Aadhaar. Or make auto debits from your bank account. This actually happens with the Social Security Numbers (SSN) in the US. (Read: Not just Indians, the US too is worried over UID)
  4. Remember section 47 prevents you from going to court. Try complaining to the UIDAI, but there is no provision for you to even complain to the UIDAI. 
  5. In fact, in order to minimize their chance of getting found out, such persons in possession of your identity information can even undertake transactions in remote villages where you may have never been.
  6. While impersonation is not defined by the Aadhaar Bill, it is regarded as an offence under section 34 and 35. Section 45 allows you to, however, complain to police officer not below the rank of Inspector of Police but section 47 quickly prevents any court from taking cognizance except when the complaint is from UIDAI. 
  7. You cannot take your impersonation case to the UIDAI. There is simply no provision. If the UIDAI or its agents were the perpetuators of the crime, you have no forum for redressal.
  8. Surely, FM Jaitley must be telling us to let such trivialities pass when it comes to making sacrifice for the country and ensuring good governance. If there are no unnecessary complaints in courts, wouldn’t this Bill end all scams and corruption in the country? In any case how would it be possible for anyone to claim malpractices in using the Consolidated Fund of India or identify any “targeted” beneficiaries?
 
Equality, justice, liberty and fraternity don’t matter
 
With his Aadhaar ‘Money’ Bill, Jaitley has now solved the problem accounting the leakages from the Consolidated Fund of India. For sure he has immortalised himself at 3:30pm on the 11 March 2016, for having 73 of 545 members of the Lok Sabha “pass” his “Money” Bill redefining good governance to usher an era of good governance. After all it will do a lot of good. For example, now you can assign an Aadhaar number to the trillions of rupees that may navigate to targeted beneficiaries. Finally, of course, end the people of the Democratic Republic of India from worrying about equality, justice, liberty and fraternity by declaring them redundant.
 
 
You may also want to read…
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
(Dr Anupam Saraph  is a Professor, Future Designer, former governance and IT advisor to Goa’s former Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar and the Global Agenda Councils of the World Economic Forum. He has designed delivery channels and ID schemes for good governance in his previous roles.)
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COMMENTS

prasad gadgil

3 years ago

there is a problem with all the opposition to Adhaar, and that is the status quo is too bad!

As I heard somewhere, politicians and businessmen dont have the luxery of dry debates!

If we consider that status quo is unacceptable, the only option to Adhaar naysayers is to suggest improvements in Adhaar and not oppose it... that's like throwing baby with the bathwater. Pl focus on core 20% improvements that will make take it 80% close to your preferred course and help get that change done!

Regards,
Prasad

Anand Vaidya

3 years ago

Appreciate your views on Single Identification as implemented by Singapore (they call it NRIC).

I think it is very well implemented, simplifying many processes for the citizens. No biometrics collected (atleast when I was a resident there)

R Balakrishnan

3 years ago

Tragic that we are pushing this through just to satisfy some dictator's whims and fancies. God Bless India. Indians have no chance. Politicians will abuse the data for securing their chair

Bill to give statutory status to Aadhaar introduced in Lok Sabha
New Delhi : Despite opposition from the Congress and the Biju Janata Dal, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday introduced the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Bill, 2016 in the Lok Sabha.
 
The bill to provide Aadhaar statutory backing and make it the mainstay of the government's direct benefit transfer (DBT) programme for subsidies was tabled in the house as a money bill.
 
Objecting to the presentation of the bill as a money bill, Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge said, "Congress is ready to cooperate on the bill, but it should not come as a money bill. To avoid Rajya Sabha they are bringing this bill as a money bill."
 
Biju Janata Dal (BJD) leader Bhartruhari Mahtab also objected to the legislation and sought clarification from the minister.
 
"The bill was brought by the UPA government and then it was referred to the standing committee. Lots of recommendations were also made but I don't know the status of the bill in the Rajya Sabha. There are many contentious issues related to Aadhaar number and so the matter was also referred to the Supreme Court," he said.
 
Responding to the queries raised by the members, Jaitley said, "The bill is substantially different from what was brought by the UPA and it is up to the Speaker to decide. The substance of the bill is that whoever gets subsidies will have to produce Aadhaar."
 
The bill seeks to provide for "good governance, efficient, transparent, and targeted delivery of subsidies, benefits and services", from public funds, to the citizens through assigning of unique identity numbers to them.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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COMMENTS

Sevarkodiyon K

1 year ago

I am facing this issue of my fingerprint being not recognized by many systems. It failed to recognize my fingerprint linked to my AADHAR card when I try to complete my KYC details for PayTm, I tried with different mobile stores and none of the fingerprint scanners recognized my fingerprints for this purpose. But, with same fingerprints, I linked my Airtel Mobile Number, JIO Mobile Number and Vodafone Mobile Number.

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