UIDAI does not have any statistics of UID progress to share
Moneylife Digital Team 04 November 2010

The UIDAI has rolled out its ambitious UID or Aadhaar project. However, there is no information or update about the progress of Aadhaar, except from Mr Nilekani who said the same would be made available in two weeks. 

Nandan Nilekani-led Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), which started collecting data, including biometrics and issuing unique identification (UID) numbers to people does not have any update on the progress.

Moneylife sent a mail to Mr Nilekani asking about the progress of its ambitious UID project, Aadhaar. We asked him about the total number of people enrolled for Aadhaar, the number of de-duplications required for fingerprints, iris scan and face pictures (all forms part of biometrics) and the number of cases where de-duplication was not possible. (De-duplication means to eliminate duplicate or redundant information).

We asked the UIDAI chairman if its database is ready for authentication process and number of people who have successfully authenticated their UIDs at least once as well as percentage of false positives and negatives during the authentication. Moneylife also asked if the authority can share the statistics and update it on a regular basis.

We received just one line mail from Mr Nilekani, in which he says, "We will be shortly be having a Public Data Portal on our website www.uidai.gov.in within two weeks which will answer all the relevant questions in your email."
Separately, according to a report from the Hindu, the government of Kerala, the only State that mandates the use of Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) in governance recently found that the client enrolment software used is only compatible with Windows.

The UIDAI is using a software that is compatible only with Microsoft's Windows operating system (OS), for its ambitious UID or Aadhaar project. However, this has irked many activists as well as advocates of open source software since UIDAI itself has mandated that all the middleware used in Aadhaar must be vendor neutral. This means it should not be dependent on any particular software and must work across the OS or platforms.

In Kerala, which has embraced open platforms, this is a vexatious issue because virtual device managers, which provide an interface for applications to devices such as biometric devices - are not Linux-compatible, the newspaper report said.
Kerala has declared that it will provide the UID number to over 60 lakh schoolchildren in the state under the UIDAI initiative and has selected Akshaya, [email protected] and Keltron as enrolment agencies for the work. However, in countries around the world where a national ID card system is being used, these IDs are given only to those above the age of 14 years and not to school-going children between five years and 14 years of age. (Read Is the UIDAI database vulnerable? http://www.moneylife.in/article/78/9594.html )

What is interesting in the case of Kerala is all three agencies appointed to do the enrolment of students use only Linux OS, which is completely different from Windows OS. Speaking with the Hindu, Ashok Dalwai, deputy director-general, UIDAI, said this is a "Kerala-specific issue." He confirmed that all enrolment software is 'purely for the Windows platform.' "For now, we have asked Kerala to go ahead with laptops with Windows. Our developers will work towards Linux compliance later," he told the newspaper.

This has left many activists and advocates of open source software furious as they feel depending on a particular vendor, especially Microsoft, which is known for its Windows and the unending security issues associated with the OS, to speed up the UID process.

Just last month, VK Saraswat, scientific advisor to the defence minister said that the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) would spearhead an effort to develop India's own futuristic computer OS to thwart cyber crimes like data theft.

Mr Saraswat, who is also director general of DRDO, said, "In today's world, where you have tremendous requirements of security on whatever you do... economy, banking and defence... it's essential that you need to have an operating system."

UIDAI has been facing criticism for rolling out UID numbers to 'residents' and not to 'citizens' of India in addition to privacy and security issues related with its database. Many activists and analysts are now questioning the motive behind the authority's approach to align with one particular vendor and diluting its vendor neutral mandate.
 

Comments
David Moss
1 decade ago
May I bring to your attention the following article, 'India's ID card scheme – drowning in a sea of false positives', available at http://dematerialisedid.com/BCSL/Drown.h...

... more questions which it would be nice if UIDAI could answer them.
Satheesh
1 decade ago
Please visit the Below URL for the UID Progress

http://portal.uidai.gov.in/uidwebportal/...
Anil Kabra
1 decade ago
We have to see the overall good it is likely to do.
Let's face it Windows is being used by over 95% of Computer users. OS issues can always be sorted out late.
Till then whoever has OS issues may opt not to join, but cannot be a hindrance to such a potentially good work.
Samir Kelekar
Replied to Anil Kabra comment 1 decade ago
What the heck is the overall good?
Millions of dollars in contracts to L-1 identiy solutions, which is owned by dubious elements involved in Iraq war?

Yes, OS issues can always be sorted out late.
Before that, let us loot and scoot! :-)

samir
V Malik
1 decade ago
Here's a copy of the RTI application I sent to UIDAI, to which I have not rcvd a response as yet . . .

The CPIO,
Unique Identification Authority of India,
3rd Floor, Tower II, Jeevan Bharati Building,
Connaught Circus, New Delhi - 110001.

dtd: 12th September 2010


Greetings & Jai Hind!!

Most humbly request information under the RTI Act of India, 2005, Please provide me with the following information.

Notes:- (1) I wish to specify that you may please not provide to me that information (or particular portion thereof) which would impede the prosecution of offenders under any law of India, and also any personal information which is unconnected with any public activity/interest or which invades the privacy of any person. (2) THIS INFORMATION IS SOUGHT IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST, AND THERE IS OVER-RIDING PARAMOUNT LARGER PUBLIC INTEREST TO BE GIVEN THE INFORMATION I HAVE ASKED FOR.

+++

1) Kindly provide me with information including full name, address and website, on the foreign companies and/or entities entrusted with work for UIDAI which are of US origin or control.

2) Kindly provide me with information including full name, address and website, on the foreign companies and/or entities entrusted with work for UIDAI which are non-US origin or control.

3) Kindly provide me with information on which of the foreign companies and/or entities entrusted with work for UIDAI are redirecting the work to subcontractors or subsidiaries or other entities in India.

4) Kindly provide me with information on what precautions have been taken by UIDAI to prevent any adverse impact on Indian interests in case of unilateral sanctions of any sort by US Government or other foreign Government. (eg: Shut down of Visa / MasterCard / AmEx services to Indian credit card issuers and holders in Iran)

+++

sent by eMail and signed hard copy

(signed)
Humbly submitted,





Veeresh Malik,
D-61,
Defence Colony,
New Delhi - 11oo24

mobile: 00-91-99118-25500

Note 1:-Application fee of Rs. 10/- in cash shall be submitted within 30 days as per procedure laid down by DoP&T at PIO, UIDAI, Delhi 11oo01 or at any one of the nominated APIOs located at the specified Post Offices in India, and a copy of this application along with receipt shall be sent to you co-terminus. Interim, you are requested to commence processing this RTI Application as per the RTI Act-2005 with effect from date of submission of this electronic copy, also as per the RTI Act-2005.

Note 2:- The public authority, Office of UIDAI, has not yet published their arrangements to accept / accompany electronic payments for e-filings as per section 6 of the Information Technology Act 2000, is requested to do same, - and hence I am constrained to go to extra expense / trouble to file a routine email request by Postal Department also.
Vijay
1 decade ago
Stat needs minimum sample. One should be at least have few months of patience. Its foolish to expect stat within a month for a project that is going to be there for 5 years!! Do you not believe that the citizens are at risk not only from fellow citizens but also from other residents? UID is a must for as many as possible.
satheesh
Replied to Vijay comment 1 decade ago
Please visit this UID Portal and see the progress

http://portal.uidai.gov.in/uidwebportal/...
Samir Kelekar
Replied to satheesh comment 1 decade ago
How many among these could be enrolled with no problems in de-duplication? How many had trouble getting de-duplicated? Further, how many have been able to authenticate their UIDs without any problem ? Was everything hunky-dory or not? Giving all the info would be being transparent.

samir
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