Aadhaar Updates Becoming Harassment for Citizens; Authorities Least Bothered
Moneylife Digital Team 20 January 2020
Updating information like photo, fingerprints, iris scan, mobile number, gender or email in one’s Aadhaar is becoming a Herculean task and a cause for harassment for several people. Those wishing to updated their Aadhaar information, not only have to spend more time, sometimes days, and more money to accomplish the task. Further, even while updating or verifying Aadhaar information, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) website appears to throw tantrums with the result that the user is often unable to enter the captcha code in time, or fails to receive the one time passcode (OTP). All that the UIDAI does in response to queries is to provide a standard set of answers without offering any real help to resolve issues. 
As Moneylife has been repeatedly pointing out, the Aadhaar numbering scheme, especially updating ones information, is especially problematic for senior citizens whose biometrics are not easily read by machines. However, as more and more people have posted on social media, almost everyone trying to update Aadhaar information is going through one or the other difficulty as well as ending up spending time and money.
Aadhaar was issued as voluntary identification and free of cost (as per UIDAI claims), but it is evident that it is designed to require regular updation, which costs money. UIDAI published rates for updating photograph, fingerprints, iris scan, mobile number, gender or email is Rs50 for all or any field. In practice, for every update, the common service centres or Aadhaar centres charge more than Rs100 to individuals. This charge applies even to rectifying mistakes committed by the operator while enrolling for Aadhaar. 
What UIDAI or the government promotes and what exactly is implemented is another issue. While UIDAI says the user can do updates online, for updating mobile number or email ID, she has no option but to visit Aadhaar centre and pay minimum Rs50. The reason is, you need to authenticate your finger prints while updating mobile number or email ID, which can be done only at the Aadhaar kendra. 
So how does the updating of Aadhaar takes place? As many Aadhaar holders are now discovering, first you need to visit the Aadhaar kendra, after standing in queue for few minutes to hours, you get a token for an appointment in the next few days -- you then have to visit the centre again and update the information. But it all depends upon you luck. Even if you have updated your information, there is no guarantee that it would be updated on the UIDAI database and would be correctly reflected in your Aadhaar data. The website says that updation can take upto 90 days.
Many Aadhaar holders are also discovering their ID number being linked with a mobile number that does not belong to them. 
Last month, Ravi Shankar Prasad, minister for information technology (IT) informed the Lok Sabha that UIDAI earned Rs27.75 crore between March and May 2019 by charging for Aadhaar authentication and eKYC services. 
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Nitin Vohra
2 years ago
I would like to make people trying to order a reprint of aadhaar aware to never apply for reprint after office hours, as the UIDAI website will allow you to complete the Aadhaar verification and make the payment of Rs 50 , but the service request number doesn't get generated and hence the order wont be placed or any error message generated, it just comes back to the initial verification page after payment. I realized this only after losing Rs 100 (in two attempts during night hours) as the money is debited from the card immediately, but neither the SR no. gets generated nor you get a confirmation or error sms or message. If you talk to the customer service they say we can't help you without a Service reference number. However, when I tried the process during office hours (in the afternoon just to be safe as who knows what their office hours are) the process worked fine and I got the reprint after about 2 weeks. UIDAI would have earned so much additional money on every reprint with this flaw. Can't they simply pop a message "that the application cannot be submitted between so and so hours" So stupid.
Nitin Vohra
Replied to Nitin Vohra comment 2 years ago
The customer service is so funny they say we can't help you with the application status or can't track that your payment was debited if you don't have a SR no., when the sole purpose I called them was to inform them that an SR no. didn't get generated even after my card was debited on two different occasions.
2 years ago
Despite Aadar failing why Govt has Ego & turns a blind eye to complaints & bullies us to Link it to PAN, etc. It does not reply to complaints & requests not to link. Thefts &Misuse of Data, to open fake accts on line are reported in newspapers. Govt, UIDAI must but, never explain for these.

Vibhav Agarwal
2 years ago
I fully agree with the issues mentioned in your post....I took an appointment online through the AADHAR website to have the AADHAR details updated for my spouse and daughter....on the appointed date and time, I reached the AADHAR centre in ICICI Bank only to be told that the AADHAR operator is on leave and will be back after 4 days!!! this is the state of AADHAR centres in urban areas...cannot even think the mess in rural and semi-urban parts of the country....moreover, the online appointment link now enables you to book an appointment only with a fraction of the AADHAR kendras (this appears to be as recent as Dec 2019) in the country....hope Money Life takes up this issue with the competent authorities who appear to have a turned deaf and blind to the shortcomings of the process.
Anil Kumar
2 years ago
Insightful. Gives an idea of issues in the system. Thanks Moneylife for highlighting.
2 years ago
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