When I opposed Aadhaar in 2010 , I was called a BJP stooge. In 2016 I am still opposing Aadhaar for the same reasons and I am told I am a Congress die hard. No one wants to see why I oppose Aadhaar as it is too difficult. Plus Aadhaar is FREE so why not get one ? Ram Krishnaswamy

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win. -Mahatma Gandhi

In matters of conscience, the law of the majority has no place. Mahatma Gandhi

“The invasion of privacy is of no consequence because privacy is not a fundamental right and has no meaning under Article 21. The right to privacy is not a guaranteed under the constitution, because privacy is not a fundamental right.” Article 21 of the Indian constitution refers to the right to life and liberty -Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi

“There is merit in the complaints. You are unwittingly allowing snooping, harassment and commercial exploitation. The information about an individual obtained by the UIDAI while issuing an Aadhaar card shall not be used for any other purpose, save as above, except as may be directed by a court for the purpose of criminal investigation.” -A three judge bench headed by Justice J Chelameswar said in an interim order.

Legal scholar Usha Ramanathan describes UID as an inverse of sunshine laws like the Right to Information. While the RTI makes the state transparent to the citizen, the UID does the inverse: it makes the citizen transparent to the state, she says.

Good idea gone bad
I have written earlier that UID/Aadhaar was a poorly designed, unreliable and expensive solution to the really good idea of providing national identification for over a billion Indians. My petition contends that UID in its current form violates the right to privacy of a citizen, guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution. This is because sensitive biometric and demographic information of citizens are with enrolment agencies, registrars and sub-registrars who have no legal liability for any misuse of this data. This petition has opened up the larger discussion on privacy rights for Indians. The current Article 21 interpretation by the Supreme Court was done decades ago, before the advent of internet and today’s technology and all the new privacy challenges that have arisen as a consequence.
Rajeev Chandrasekhar, MP Rajya Sabha

“What is Aadhaar? There is enormous confusion. That Aadhaar will identify people who are entitled for subsidy. No. Aadhaar doesn’t determine who is eligible and who isn’t,” Jairam Ramesh

But Aadhaar has been mythologised during the previous government by its creators into some technology super force that will transform governance in a miraculous manner. I even read an article recently that compared Aadhaar to some revolution and quoted a 1930s historian, Will Durant. Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Rajya Sabha MP

“I know you will say that it is not mandatory. But, it is compulsorily mandatorily voluntary,” Jairam Ramesh, Rajya Saba April 2017.

August 24, 2017: The nine-judge Constitution Bench rules that right to privacy is “intrinsic to life and liberty” and is inherently protected under the various fundamental freedoms enshrined under Part III of the Indian Constitution

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the World; indeed it's the only thing that ever has"

“Arguing that you don’t care about the right to privacy because you have nothing to hide is no different than saying you don’t care about free speech because you have nothing to say.” - Edward Snowden


Here is what the Parliament Standing Committee on Finance, which examined the draft N I A Bill said.

1. There is no feasibility study of the project]

2. The project was approved in haste

3. The system has far-reaching consequences for national security

4. The project is directionless with no clarity of purpose

5. It is built on unreliable and untested technology

6. The exercise becomes futile in case the project does not continue beyond the present number of 200 million enrolments

7. There is lack of coordination and difference of views between various departments and ministries of government on the project


What was said before the elections:

NPR & UID aiding Aliens – Narendra Modi

"I don't agree to Nandan Nilekeni and his madcap (UID) scheme which he is trying to promote," Senior BJP Leader Yashwant Sinha, Sept 2012

"All we have to show for the hundreds of thousands of crore spent on Aadhar is a Congress ticket for Nilekani" Yashwant Sinha.(27/02/2014)

TV Mohandas Pai, former chief financial officer and head of human resources, tweeted: "selling his soul for power; made his money in the company wedded to meritocracy." Money Life Article

Nilekani’s reporting structure is unprecedented in history; he reports directly to the Prime Minister, thus bypassing all checks and balances in government - Home Minister Chidambaram

To refer to Aadhaar as an anti corruption tool despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary is mystifying. That it is now officially a Rs.50,000 Crores solution searching for an explanation is also without any doubt. -- Statement by Rajeev Chandrasekhar, MP & Member, Standing Committee on Finance

Finance minister P Chidambaram’s statement, in an exit interview to this newspaper, that Aadhaar needs to be re-thought completely is probably the last nail in its coffin. :-) Financial Express

The Rural Development Ministry headed by Jairam Ramesh created a road Block and refused to make Aadhaar mandatory for making wage payment to people enrolled under the world’s largest social security scheme NRGA unless all residents are covered.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

12504 - Website on Aadhaar plaints launched, gets 1k emails in 3 hrs - Times of India

Kim Arora | TNN | Dec 14, 2017, 02:41 IST

NEW DELHI: On the day the government extended the deadline to link Aadhar with bank accounts, activists started a website on Wednesday called speakforme. in. Using this, citizens can write to their MPs, banks, mobile operators, and other government service providers to complain about repeated calls and messages from various entities asking citizens to link their Aadhaar numbers with various services.

Number of emails sent crossed the 1,000 mark in little over three hours of the website going live, said those who started it. At least 780 of these were sent to MPs. The website is being run by a group of about 90 volunteers, many of whom also participated in the campaign for net neutrality two years ago. Chief among them is Bengaluru-based IT professional Kiran Jonnalagadda.

"We want Parliament to discuss this. Everyone has been receiving harassing SMSes and calls to link their Aadhaar to mobile phones and bank accounts. This is coercion. The technology behind Aadhaar is broken in various ways. Coercion will make it worse. It has to be fixed before it is forced on people," says Jonnalagadda. The winter session of Parliament starts later this week.

Adhar business has become public nuissance to people as no one gives acknowledment after proving adhar in Banks, LIC etc
Appa Durai

Nikhil Pahwa, founder of Medianama.com, is also part of the team behind speakforme-.in. "If all your services are linked to it, then Aadhaar becomes a kill switch. You can be disconnected by the government for no reason. There is also the issue of mass surveillance, when Aadhaar is used along with NATGRID, which is a surveillance system the government is setting up," says Pahwa.

When writing to an MP, a user can select his or her state and constituency from a drop down menu. Using publicly available information about MPs online, the website pulls out the relevant MP's email address. The user can then send a template email demanding that Aadhaar be made non-mandatory. The letter can be edited and customised before sending as well.

12503 - World's biggest biometric database grows in India despite doubts - Economic Times

Dec 14, 2017, 07.59 AM IST

Read more at:

By Upmanyu Trivedi and Iain Marlow 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is pushing Indians to link their digital IDs to a host of services such as credit cards and cellphones, even as the Supreme Court will hear petitions Thursday seeking to limit the scope of the world's largest biometric database. 

Almost 1 billion people had signed up for the program before a landmark privacy ruling in August strengthened the case against making the Aadhaar ID mandatory. The court will now decide on the validity of the government's order to meet specified deadlines. Last month, it told banks and utilities to stop scaring customers after people complained about a barrage of emails and text messages warning of frozen accounts and invalidated sim cards if they failed to comply with the government's push. 

To be sure, the court's immediate hearing will only pertain to the deadlines, with more detailed arguments on overall legality probably next year. While officials say Aadhaar is saving the government billions of dollars by better targeting beneficiaries of subsidized food and cash transfers, critics point to unfair exclusions and data leaks. 

"Instances of the exclusion of genuine beneficiaries and the public disclosure of Aadhaar numbers make it clear that significant room exists for instituting more substantive privacy protections and grievance redressal mechanisms," said Saksham Khosla, an analyst at Carnegie India. "The Supreme Court can mandate critical safeguards." 

Aadhaar is a unique 12-digit number assigned to Indian residents, backed by their fingerprints, iris scans and certain demographic details. Some lawyers and activists, such as Shyam Divan, say that once linked to various services it will offer the government a web of information about each individual that will violate the person's privacy. 

Surveillance State 
"The Aadhaar Act purports to provide legal sanction to a program that lays the framework for real time surveillance of every Indian," Divan said at a previous hearing. 

Indians are mandated to link their Aadhaar to: 

Government-issued Permanant Account Numbers, which help track tax filings Bank accounts, credit cards, insurance policies, mutual funds, pension plans Social welfare benefits such as cooking gas subsidies Mobile numbers 
Chief Justice Dipak Misra told lawyers in the Supreme Court on Wednesday that the case would be heard the next day. 

Enrollments to Aadhaar have increased by about 80 million over the past year -- roughly the entire population of Germany -- as pressure built on citizens to either link or forfeit these services. Modi had rejected Aadhaar while in opposition, terming it a threat to national security. However, he has since embraced and extended its scope far beyond what was envisioned earlier. 

Data Leaks 
The program is also plagued by allegations of data leaks, where personal details of users were made public on government websites. The Unique Identification Authority of India, which administers Aadhaar, has denied database vulnerabilities. 

Meanwhile newspapers continue to carry reports about poor or disabled Indians -- such as leprosy patients -- who are denied food and pensions because they either lack an Aadhaar number or the fingerprints and iris scans needed to apply for one. 

Privacy experts and lawyers suggest the Supreme Court's ruling this August that Indians have a fundamental right to privacy could be a setback to the government's push. A right to privacy, activists say, means the government can't force Indian citizens to hand over their unique biometric data to the government in order to receive basic government services. 

Read more at:

12502 - Aadhaar Verdict Highlights: Supreme Court To Pass Interim Orders On Aadhaar Tomorrow - NDTV

All India | Edited by Nonika Marwaha | Updated: December 14, 2017 16:03 IST

NEW DELHI:  A five-judge constitution bench today heared the pleas seeking an interim stay on the Centre's decision directing mandatory linking of Aadhaar with various government schemes and welfare measures. A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud said that the larger bench will sit at 2 pm today to take up the interlocutory applications seeking interim relief against the Centre's decision on linking of Aadhaar with various schemes. The Centre had on December 7 told the top court that the deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar to avail various services and welfare schemes would shortly be extended till March 31 next year. The Supreme Court will pass the interim orders tomorrow.

12501 - 'You Cleared Aadhaar For 6 Schemes, Centre Made It 139': Court Told - NDTV

Aadhaar hearing In Supreme Court: Petitioners tell judges that the top court had made Aadhaar voluntary, not compulsory
All India | Edited by Anindita Sanyal | Updated: December 14, 2017 16:04 IST

Activists have filed petitions objecting against Aadhaar linking saying it breaches the Right to Privacy.

NEW DELHI:  Aadhaar has been made mandatory for bank accounts and welfare schemes in violation of an earlier order of the Supreme Court that called it voluntary, petitioners opposing the  government move told a five-judge bench of the top court today. Instead of making it mandatory for six schemes, as ordered by the court, the government had extended it to 139, said the petitioners, who have challenged the validity of the 12-digit Unique Identification Number in the top court. The court said it would pass an interim order on the issue tomorrow.

The petitioners contend that making Aadhaar mandatory violates the Right to Privacy, which has recently been recognized by the Supreme Court as a fundamental right. The largescale sharing of biometric data like iris scans and finger printing also leaves room for misuse.  

The Supreme Court had made Aadhaar voluntary, not compulsory, senior advocate Shyam Dhivan, who was representing the petitioners, told the judges. But a law pushed through parliament last year has given the government power to make it mandatory for accessing any service -- including train and bus travel.

As of now, the Centre demands Aadhaar for 139 schemes, instead of the six schemes cleared by the top court, he said. Aadhaar has been made mandatory for board exams, scholarships and higher education by the education boards and the University Grants Commission. Even HIV-positive patients are denied treatment if they do not have Aadhaar, Mr Dhivan said.

"If the orders of the Supreme Court are not obeyed by the government, then it is a sad day," the counsel added, provoking the court to reply, "Let us not go by rhetoric and hyperbole, let us go by the law".

The top court started the hearing as the December 31 deadline for linking Aadhaar banks and financial transactions and welfare measures neared. But two days ago, in a surprise move, the government extended the date of linking Aadhaar to old bank accounts to March 31, 2018.

For accounts opened after 1 June 2017, Aadhaar, Permanent Account Number or PAN will have to be submitted within six months of opening or by 31 March 2018 -- the later date will be the deadline.

12500 - Aadhaar Articles Dated 14th December 2017

Government extends deadline to link Aadhaar with PAN, other financial services till March 31

Economic Times

NEW DELHI: Those who have not linked their Aadhaar with the required financial accounts, documents can now breathe a slight sigh of relief. The government has extend the deadline for linking Aadhaar with financial investments/instruments to March 31, 2018, stated a finance ministry press release ...

Aadhaar linking dates extended to March 31: All your questions answered - The Indian Express

Aadhaar, Bank A/c can be linked by March 31 - Economic Times

Government extends Aadhaar-bank a/c linking deadline to March 31, 2018 - Times of India

Aadhaar deadline, EC notice to Rahul, Rohit Sharma fireworks and other top stories of December ...

The Hindu
It has been decided to notify 31 March, 2018 or six months from the date of commencement of account based relationship by the client, whichever is later, as the date of submission of the Aadhaar number, and Permanent Account Number or Form 60 by the clients to the reporting entity,” an official ...

'You Cleared Aadhaar For 6 Schemes, Centre Made It 139': Court Told

New Delhi: Aadhaar has been made mandatory for bank accounts and welfare schemes in violation of an earlier order of the Supreme Court that called it voluntary, petitioners opposing the government move told a five-judge bench of the top court today. Instead of making it mandatory for six schemes, ...

Bank Account-Aadhaar Linking Deadline Extended: 5 Things To Know - NDTV

Aadhaar Verdict Highlights: Supreme Court To Pass Interim Orders On Aadhaar Tomorrow - NDTV

SC to hear pleas against Aadhaar today, find out the deadlines for various linkages - Moneycontrol.com

World's biggest biometric database grows in India despite doubts
Economic Times
Almost 1 billion people had signed up for the program before a landmark privacy ruling in August strengthened the case against making the Aadhaar ID mandatory. The court will now decide on the validity of the government's order to meet specified deadlines. Last month, it told banks and utilities to stop ...

Times of India
Everyone has been receiving harassing SMSes and calls to link their Aadhaar to mobile phones and bank accounts. This is coercion. The technology behind Aadhaar is broken in various ways. Coercion will make it worse. It has to be fixed before it is forced on people," says Jonnalagadda. The winter ...

Zee Business
The submission of Aadhaar details are required only for non-demat transactions on the BSE StAR MF Platform. ... rules, the Bombay Stock Exchange has asked all the Asset Management Companies (AMCs) to ensure that their clients data are linked with Aadhaar card details before January 2018.

Inc42 Media
Marking as its 'Homecoming', San Francisco and Bengaluru-based e-signature solutions startup SignEasy has launched an Aadhaar-based e-signature compliant solution with a fully integrated fill-and-sign document workflow – Aadhaar eSign. In line with the Indian government's Digital India initiative, ...

Pune Mirror
"After considering various representations received and inputs received from banks, it has been decided to notify that March 31, 2018 or six months from the date of commencement of account-based relationship by the client, whichever is later, is the date of submission of the Aadhaar number, and ...

The Indian Express
Looking from technology perspective, top trending How to was 'How to link Aadhaar card with PAN card' followed by 'How to book Jio phone' and 'How to buy bitcoin in India'. Given that bitcoin valuation has risen sharply in the last few days, this 'How to' is not surprising. The top How to trend doesn't ...

The Wire
Roy's statement also showed that the chief minister and chief secretary were not in agreement with the minister when it came to the issue of cancelling ration cards in the absence of Aadhaar linkage. “The CS should have apologised for the unwanted order,” Roy was quoted as saying. He added, “the ...

12499 - Indian Govt postpones linking bank accounts to digital ID - Asia Times

The announcement on December 12 reverses the requirement for Indians to link their bank accounts to the Aadhaar system. Photo: AFP

A day before the case came up in the Supreme Court, the government postponed the linking of the Aadhaar digital identity scheme to bank accounts


A public outcry has forced the Indian government to delay plans to roll out a digital identity program on every citizen, linking bank accounts and other financial data.

The mandatory linking of the controversial Aadhaar system with bank accounts and mutual funds has been postponed, according to an announcement issued on December 12 by the Department of Revenue under the Ministry of Finance.

The announcement stated that a new date will be announced later. However, adding to the confusion, the Ministry of Finance issued a press release stating that bank accounts have to be linked by March 31, 2018. It is not clear if this rule applies only to new accounts or existing ones as well.

The Aadhaar project has become one of the most controversial issues in India, raising massive concerns about the government’s ability to carry out surveillance of citizens. While it was started as a “welfare” project to ensure better targeted deliveries of government subsidies, it was essentially a surveillance tool, predicated on the ability to track citizens and profile them.The notification by the federal government came just a day ahead of a hearing in the Supreme Court, challenging the mandatory linking of the digital identity system to bank accounts and other financial products. On June 1, the government of India had issued a notification modifying the Prevention of Money laundering Act (PMLA) mandating that all citizens link their unique digital identity number, also known as Aadhaar, to their bank accounts. A similar order has been issued by the Department of Telecommunications asking citizens to link their Aadhaar number to cell phone numbers.

Avoiding Judicial Scrutiny?
“One thing is clear. The hearing was slated to start from tomorrow and the government doesn’t want the court to look into this. That explains this last minute notification postponing the bank linking indefinitely,” Dr Usha Ramanathan, a legal researcher and one of the country’s biggest privacy advocates, told Asia Times. Ramanathan has been spearheading the move to scrap the Aadhaar project for over seven years and was instrumental in pointing out the various flaws in the project.
Pune-based Dr Anupam Saraph, a noted expert and designer of complex system has been another campaigner who has repeatedly raised concerns about the project over the last year. “The June 1 notification asking citizens to link their bank accounts was clearly illegal since the PMLA has no legal basis to freeze accounts of citizens. The government was aware of this and wanted to scare people into linking their accounts before the case came up for hearing,” he told Asia Times.

Reliable government sources said there was considerable concern over a “backlash from the public” if their bank accounts were frozen after December 31. Officials were worried that if the deadline was not postponed, many citizens would be denied access to their savings, which could lead to financial chaos.

The Indian Government issued a notification on December 12, 2017 postponing the mandatory linking of bank accounts to the Aadhaar number.

Worried over the growing implications of the project, the Supreme Court was asked earlier this year to also examine whether privacy is a fundamental right. A rare, nine-judge bench of the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that privacy is a fundamental right as enshrined in various clauses of the Constitution. “It has been four months since the landmark privacy judgment came out. The government has not done anything and was possibly waiting for the last minute, so that more people signed up, before issuing this notification,” Ramanathan said.

Ironically, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) had issued a press release last week stating that the linking was mandatory. The press release was issued in response to a viral video by a lawyer, Aishwarya Bhati, who had pointed out that the linking could not be mandatory since the interim orders of the Supreme Court had specifically mandated it to be used for a few welfare schemes. While UIDAI argued that the law had overtaken the judgment, skeptics like Saraph are not convinced. “If the circumstances have changed, then the UIDAI should have gone to court and sought a clarification. Why did they push it through by threatening citizens?”

A Surveillance Regime
Started by the Congress-led UPA government nearly eight years ago, the plan had seen massive opposition from the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP). During that phase, the then Chief Minister of Gujarat, Narendra Modi, publicly tweeted that he had met up with the Aadhaar team and expressed his concerns about the security of sensitive personal data. The team was unable to come up with convincing answers to his queries.

However, some time between the meeting and his election as Prime Minister in May 2014, Modi seems to have had a change of heart about the project. It was revealed that Modi, as the Chief Minister had not only required that his state join the project, but also collected data that was not even mandated by the project.

As the BJP-led NDA government took over in May 2014, many had hoped for a roll back of the project. However, the government went ahead and began to promote the project by virtually threatening citizens with disruption of basic services, such as the ability to file income taxes.

Earlier, petitioners to the Supreme Court had challenged the project, by pointing out the massive potential for misuse. As a German diplomat posted in India recently told this correspondent: “Such a scheme is prohibited by law in Germany. We have seen how such a database of citizens’ data can be misused and German law explicitly prohibits it.”
The Supreme Court passed two interim orders. One prohibited the government from expanding the scope of the project while the other specified particular welfare schemes where the project could be deployed. But the Modi government pushed through a ‘Money Bill’ in Parliament in 2016, and did not allow the Opposition an opportunity to block it. It has also  failed to deliver welfare schemes in a targeted manner and has instead excluded thousands of people from marginalized communities from getting their mandatory benefits.

The move ensured that concerns expressed by law makers were not taken into consideration and the government managed to push through the law, enabling surveillance clauses on the grounds of “national security.” This gives the government unfettered access to sensitive personal data for profiling citizens. Due to the lack of privacy laws, this opens up citizens to manipulations by the government, that undermines democratic principles enshrined by the Constitution of India.

12498 - Is the Aadhaar experiment akin to an elephant walking a tightrope? - Your Story

While criticism against Aadhaar has been quick, there is a need for an unbiased report on the ways in which the PDS system has fared since its implementation.

There are numerous examples where Aadhaar glitches have spelled trouble, misery and major inconvenience to the citizens of India. A widow from Jharkhand who cannot walk has been denied food grains from January 2017 because she couldn’t authenticate herself. A family had two members whose fingerprints couldn’t  match with the database of Aadhaar, and authorities refused to provide food grains.

Such instances have become common talking points in the discourse of Aadhaar implementation. Other topics related to Aadhaar that have ruled the discourse heavily is that of privacy of public data that has been acquired by UIDAI through Aadhaar implementation. Through our social dialogue it becomes clear that there are two tests that Aadhaar project should essentially pass to win support from the public:

1.  The Privacy test
2. The Welfare test

The Aadhaar experiment is is enormous and historic. I call this an experiment because the whole action of creating a social identity to serve the purpose of inclusive banking and many other purposes is something new. India as a nation currently is testing many hypotheses. The primary purpose of Aadhaar is to serve as the universal identity, iron out kinks while availing subsidies, and also act as an enabler to acquire other government authorised documents like passport etc.

As of August 2017, 1.17 billion people in India are enrolled members of Aadhaar. While enrolling in Aadhaar the system collects a photo, scans of 10 fingers and an iris scan of the eyes. Put together with the name, address and phone number, Aadhaar transforms into a total digital identity for an Indian. It is one of the most sophisticated ID projects in the world. The successive UPA and NDA governments were able to build a platform that was able to onboard more than one billion people. No other public entity has been able to carry out this feat.
Let’s briefly go over where exactly Aadhaar has served us in the near past. Aadhaar card was used as the major document of proof when opening a bank account under the Pradhan Mantri Jhan Dhan Yojana. The account opened under this scheme has major benefits of zero account balance, accident benefits, RuPay card etc. Aadhaar was used to directly transfer subsidies to one’s bank account when someone is eligible for the same. Introduction of Aadhaar has also been a boon to the banking industry, as it provides great relief to citizens whilst opening a bank account by asking them to submit only one document.
The other advantages of a unique ID are also for everyone to see. There are so many government initiatives that have bitten dust just because they could not target beneficiaries precisely. Aadhaar helps this condition through:
  1. Unique identification and authentication of targeted beneficiaries,
  2. Removal of ghost beneficiaries,
  3. Identification of tax evaders.
There are and there will be some problems when such progressive changes are made. The way the public distribution system (PDS) has worked in India through its inception and till the near present is no secret.  The whole system is still a leaky pipe. There is no denying the crucial failures in Aadhaar that have led to some problems at the ground level. But to look at the Aadhaar issue in the case of welfare distribution one ought to look at its performance vis a vis the old system.
The relevant question to be asked amidst all this disruption is if the Aadhaar-targeted PDS machinery better than ration card-targeted PDS machinery.
The old PDS also had a large number of poor and needy people going without food. Fair price shop owners used to fake ration cards and sell ration in the open market.  Research should be aimed at comparative analysis and if and how the new system has brought any desirable changes. What has been clearly missing is a clear and transparent investigation of Aadhaar-based PDS. An expert committee should be set up to evaluate and take report of the ground situation. It is really noteworthy that despite such criticisms no organisation has come up with a deep fact-based analysis of the situation. One-off cases and outliers, although very sad and unfortunate, do not at all make case for removal of Aadhaar-based PDS.
From a technological and design perspective, the cases that have come up are clearly avoidable under the present structure of Aadhaar-based PDS. Better on-ground management from bureaucrats and civil servants, technical finetuning of Aadhaar infrastructure such as offline verification system and other improvements could have easily prevented many of the cases.
It is easy to get paranoid only when big changes are made to the present-day system.
The debate on privacy is more natural and is a consequence of the big shadow that a great elephant-esque project like Aadhaar throws. A database of more than one billion humans that contains names, addresses, biometric identity and identification will without doubt be a target of digital mining. No database is perfectly secure and there have been many reports of privacy breach resulting from government carelessness and hacking efforts from engineers. There have been fears that Aadhaar data may be used for surveillance or to punish dissenters.
But at the same time in a country like India, where only a little more than four percent of the population pays any kind of direct tax, we need Aadhaar to spread a wider web to increase tax collection and, in effect, have a larger pocket to spend on social welfare schemes. What do we prioritise: individual privacy or efficient social welfare scheme implementations?  Those are two difficult things to do a trade off with.
For the Aadhaar project to gain widespread trust there has to be incredible technical and social innovation, where a great digital trust system that is well designed addresses privacy and efficiency concerns. From the lens of 2017, it just seems like an elephant trying to balance a rope. A thin one.

(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)

12497 - Three held for Aadhaar fraud - The Hindu


CHENNAI , DECEMBER 13, 2017 01:03 IS

They took equipment from bank and generated fake cards
Three persons, including a Nepali national, were arrested by the Thiruvanmiyur police for fraudulently generating Aadhaar cards.
According to the police, the Tamil Nadu e-Governance Agency had entered into an agreement with a firm called Indian Computer Technology for collecting details to generate Aadhaar cards. The personnel attached to the agency were operating with the necessary electronic equipment from Karur Vysya Bank.
The company’s personnel — R. Arun, 25, and M. Balamurugan, 28 — took the kits from the bank without informing the authorities. They forged documents to generate Aadhaar cards for Nepali nationals.

The police arrested the duo along with a Nepali national, Nim Bahadur Katri, 24, and remanded them in judicial custody for offences under Sections 406 (punishment for criminal breach of trust and 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating) of the Indian Penal Code.

12496 - Supreme Court to hear challenge to validity of Aadhaar scheme - The Hindu

NEW DELHI, DECEMBER 13, 2017 11:31 IST

Constitution Bench may hear pleas.

Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra on Wednesday informed the petitioners challenging the validity of Aadhaar scheme that their case from Thursday.

The announcement followed the issuance of a government notification amending the Prevention of Money-laundering (Maintenance of Records) Rules to discard the December 31, 2017 deadline for the linking of Aadhaar with bank accounts and PANs.

The notification, issued by the Department of Revenue of the Ministry of Finance , does not give any deadline for linking Aadhaar with banks accounts and PANs and leaves it open-ended, that is, until the government issues a notification in the future fixing a deadline.

In an urgent mentioning, one of the many done in the past few days, by the petitioners before the CJI Bench, Chief Justice Misra told senior advocate Shyam Divan and advocate Vipin Nair that “we will hear it tomorrow.”

A five-judge Constitution Bench, comprising the CJI, Justices A.K. Sikri, A.M. Khanwilkar, D.Y. Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan, is likely to hear the petitions. It will take up pleas for clarifications on and interim reliefs from deadlines issued.

The right to choice of existing Aadhaar holders who do not want to link their bank accounts may come up for a decision. 

Similarly, the issue of extension of deadline of linkage of mobile phones with Aadhaar would also be pleaded before the Constitution Bench. The present deadline is February 6, 2018 in this regard.

Last week, Attorney General of India K.K. Venugopal submitted before the court that the government would notify the extension of deadline for mandatory Aadhaar linking from December 31, 2017 to March 31, 2018.

This extension included 139 government subsidies, benefits or services, which are funded out of the Consolidated Fund of India as per Section 7 of the Aadhaar Act of 2016.

Mobile phone linkage extension
Mr. Venugopal had, however, said the extension of mobile phone linkage deadline would require a judicial order from the Supreme Court itself. This is because the government was complying with a February 6, 2017 order of the court in the Lok Niti Foundation case to tighten up verification process of mobile phone users through Aadhaar linkage, citing national security.
The Chief Justice had then indicated that it would be left to the Constitution Bench to give dates for the final hearing of the Aadhaar petitions.
Mr. Divan had pressed for dates in the first or second week of January 2018, immediately after the Christmas holidays. He had submitted that the government should promise that no coercive steps would be taken by it or its agencies on Aadhaar holders till the court takes a final decision on the validity of the Aadhaar scheme.
“If that is the case, nobody will produce it [Aadhaar]. We have said that those with Aadhaar do not mind producing their Aadhaar,” Mr. Venugopal had responded, willing to argue the question before the Constitution Bench.
Mr. Divan had said the government’s stand was increasingly ambiguous on the plight of the existing Aadhaar holders who do not want to link their Aadhaar. He had urged the court to address this issue immediately.
The Aadhaar petitions have been in the Supreme Court since 2014. The petitions have challenged Aadhaar as a violation of the fundamental right to privacy.
In October, the Centre joined forces with Mr. Divan for an early hearing of the Aadhaar cases. Mr. Venugopal then said that falsehoods have been spread about Aadhaar linking, including how Aadhaar is a must for CBSE students to appear in Class 10 and 12 exams. He also said a Constitution Bench may be set up to decide all the Aadhaar issues once and for all.

Justice Rohinton Nariman’s separate judgment
The decision to set up a Constitution Bench comes despite Justice Rohinton Nariman’s separate judgment in the nine-judge Bench declaring right to privacy as a fundamental right. Justice Nariman’s judgment had directed that the Aadhaar petitions to be posted for hearing before the ‘original’ three-judge Bench.
This ‘original’ Bench led by Justice J. Chelameswar had referred the petitions for hearing before a five-judge Bench, which had found it necessary to first decide whether privacy was a fundamental right or not before hearing the Aadhaar petitions. It had referred the legal question to a nine-judge Bench, which came out with the historic judgment in favour of the common man’s fundamental right to privacy against State intrusions.
The nine-judge Bench verdict has a crucial bearing on the Aadhaar petitions, which have argued that Aadhaar’s use of biometric details like fingerprints and iris scans violate bodily and informational privacy.
The petitioners argue that mandatory requirement of Aadhaar for these schemes “constrict rights and freedoms which a citizen has long been enjoying unless and until they part with their personal biometric information to the government.”
The petitions have termed the Aadhaar Act of 2016 unconstitutional and contrary to the concept of limited and accountable governance.

12495 - How Aadhaar is helping empower Indian women - Live Mint

Aadhaar is helping empower Indian women and driving increased use of banking services, says the first study of the nationwide Aadhaar program

Aadhaar was implemented to improve the efficiency of welfare payments that account for over $60 billion in annual spending, replacing cash with bank transfers and subsidies. Photo: Indranil Bhoumik/Mint
Bangalore: India’s adoption of its first nationwide identification system is helping empower the country’s women and driving increased use of banking services, according to the first study of the nationwide Aadhaar program.
Virtually all homes in the western state of Rajasthan have at least one bank account, and most have several, since the introduction of the Aadhaar program, the Center for Global Development said in a report. Despite the advances, problems remain in digital authentication for the biometric system that now covers more than 1.1 billion people, or 15% of the world’s population.
Aadhaar was implemented to improve the efficiency of welfare payments that account for over $60 billion in annual spending, replacing cash with bank transfers and subsidies. The program assigns a unique 12-digit number to each user that is associated with their iris, fingerprints and facial features. While the program has been praised for reducing fraud and preventing leakages, it’s been criticized for not paying enough attention to issues including privacy and data security.
The study was done in partnership with consultancy MicroSave and surveyed 633 households in rural and urban areas of Rajasthan. The group represented a variety of income and landholding categories, with 64% of respondents being women.
“The mandating of welfare payments to female heads of the family is changing local level dynamics and age-old hierarchies,” said Anit Mukherjee, a policy fellow at the Center for Global Development and one of the authors of the study. “In many villages, women are setting out in groups to go to the bank, it’s a visible change,” he said in a phone interview.

The survey included sections on financial inclusion, empowerment, user experience as well as perception.
In Rajasthan, a state known to be patriarchal, the requirement for the family head to be female drove a massive increase in banking use with 66% of the female heads of family opening accounts when they didn’t have one before registration.
However, men still control the use of mobile phones as only about a third of the households had a female head who can read and write text messages.
“What the debate was missing so far was data,” Mukherjee said. “We wanted to move from anecdotal evidence toward hard data, making it a more rigorous method of policy evaluation,”
The study also found bottlenecks in the technology infrastructure with more than 25% saying it takes three to four attempts to authenticate. About 4% said they were unable to authenticate themselves on time to access benefits. Bloomberg

First Published: Tue, Dec 12 2017. 12 45 PM IST

12494 - Afraid of Aadhaar Misuse? Here’s a Guide to Track Its Usage History! - The Better India

You can now visit the UIDAI’s official website, and easily track the history of your Aadhaar card. This will enable you to know the details where the unique identification code was used.

December 11, 2017, 4:14 pm - 

As per a notification from the Department of Revenue, the Government of India has made it mandatory for Aadhaar cardholders to link their 12 digit unique identification number to their bank accounts by December 31, 2017.
So, if you have linked your Aadhaar card to your bank account, is the fear of your biometric IDs being misused stressing you out or holding you back?
If yes, then it is time to heave a sigh of relief! To tackle the growing concerns of citizens about the safety of linking their Aadhaar cards to accounts that hold confidential information, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) has made available the option of retrieving the history of Aadhaar card usage, for a period of time.
You can now visit the UIDAI’s official website, and easily track the history of your Aadhaar card. This will enable you to know the details where the unique identification code was used.

Representational Image Only. Source: Wikimedia Commons
Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you track your card usage history details:
1. Go to the official website of the UIDAI – uidai.gov.in
2. Go to the Aadhaar services tab and click on ‘Aadhaar Authentication History.’
3. This will redirect you to a new page. You need to enter your unique Aadhar number here.
4. Click on generate OTP after filling the security code given in the box
5. This will open a new page. You can now select the type of authentication you want to check here from a list of options.
The options available include biometrics, demographics, OTP, demographic & biometric, biometric & OTP and demographic & OTP options. If you wish to check every entry made through your Aadhaar, select the option ‘All.’
6. Remember UIDAI can provide you with a history of usage from the last seven months till date. You have to now enter the date range for which you want to retrieve the history.
7. Enter the generated OTP and click on ‘Submit.’
You will now see search results listing the date, time and type of Aadhaar authentication used. It is important to note that the page won’t be able to show you who made the requests.
But in case, the history and the details reveal something dubious, you can lock and unlock your Aadhaar information online, whenever you need to use it.

Over the last months, the Government has made linking of Aadhaar card at various levels mandatory. Apart from linking your Aadhaar to your bank account, PAN card and mobile phone number, you are also required to link your Aadhaar for filing IT returns, to hold mutual funds, insurance policies, PPF and using small savings schemes like Kisan Vikas Patra.

12493 - Latest Facility From UIDAI: Know Where Your Aadhaar Card Has Been Used - NDTV

The Aadhaar Authentication History tool by the UIDAI enables Aadhaar holders to check their authentication history online.

Business | NDTV Profit Team | Updated: December 12, 2017 11:54 

Aadhaar card or the 12-digit Unique Identity Number - issued by the UIDAI or Unique Identification Authority of India - is now to be mandatorily linked with a number of essential tasks. These include operation of bank accounts/PPF accounts, investment in small savings schemes and use of a mobile number or SIM. The UIDAI on its website uidai.gov.in has provided several online tools. These online facilities by UIDAI range from enabling Aadhaar holders to retrieve their misplaced UIDs to letting them check the status of linkage between Aadhaar and their bank accounts. One such tool enables Aadhaar holders to check their authentication history

Called 'Aadhaar Authentication History', this online tool enables Aadhaar holders to view their authentication details and access their Aadhaar Authentication History (Notifications) data, according to the UIDAI website - uidai.gov.in. The Aadhaar Authentication History tool details the method of authentication, transaction ID (created at the time of request) and error code or Aadhaar authentication failure code, among other pieces of information, according to the UIDAI website.

Five things to know about UIDAI Aadhaar Authentication

Aadhaar authentication means the process wherein Aadhaar number, along with other attributes including biometrics, are submitted to the Central Identities Data Repository (CIDR) for verification, the UIDAI website noted.

This verification takes place on the basis of information or data or documents available with the CIDR, the UIDAI adds.

UIDAI provides an online service to support this process.

Aadhaar authentication service only responds with a "yes/no" and no personal identity information is returned as part of the response, according to the UIDAI.
How to use Aadhaar Transaction History tool online via uidai.gov.in

Aadhaar holders can access the transaction history tool online via the UIDAI website.

(Users can access the Aadhaar Authentication History tool on the UIDAI website - uidai.gov.in)

Once on the UIDAI homepage, click on the Aadhaar Authentication History link. The tool can also be accessed through a link.

On the next page, titled 'Aadhaar Authentication History', the user may proceed by entering his or her UID (or Aadhaar number) in the given field. 

(A user may proceed by entering his or her Aadhaar number and the security code in the given fields)

Enter the security code as specified in the other field and click on 'Generate OTP'.

On the following page, titled 'Aadhaar Notification Setting', the user may specify the type of authentication to be searched, the date range and the number of records (a maximum of 50 is allowed at a time), according to the UIDAI website.

(The UIDAI tool enables users to enter the desired data range for accessing authentication history)

Enter the OTP or One-Time Password received on your registered mobile number and click on 'Submit' to proceed.

(The UIDAI tool displays information such as date, time and authentication type in a tabular format)

After a successful entry, the UIDAI tool displays the authentication date, time, type, ID and response, among other details, to the user.

12492 - AAdhaar Articles Dated 12th December 2017

Called 'Aadhaar Authentication History', this online tool enables Aadhaar holders to view their authentication details and access their Aadhaar Authentication History (Notifications) data, according to the UIDAI website - uidai.gov.in. The Aadhaar Authentication History tool details the method of ...

Economic Times
How to link Aadhaar with Kotak Mahindra Bank account. ET Online|. Updated: Dec 12, 2017, 12.27 PM IST. 0Comments. Here is how Kotak Mahindra Bank customers can link their accounts with their Aadhaar. People with Aadhaar will have to link it with their bank accounts by December 31, 2017, and ...

The Better India
You can now visit the UIDAI's official website, and easily track the history of your Aadhaar card. This will enable you to know the details where the unique identification code was used. by Jovita Aranha December 11, 2017, 4:14 pm ...

Bangalore: India's adoption of its first nationwide identification system is helping empower the country's women and driving increased use of banking services, according to the first study of the nationwide Aadhaar program. Virtually all homes in the western state of Rajasthan have at least one bank ...

Economic Times
How to generate UAN using Aadhaar even before joining a new job. By ... Since this is a one-time password (OTP) enabled process, only those who have registered their mobile number with Aadhaar will be able to ... Also Read: Diffrernce between linking Aadhaar with mobile and biometric verification.

Times of India
BENGALURU: Parappana Agrahara (Bengaluru Central Prison) inmates will get Aadhaar card from the jail itself soon. Inmates who ... After getting Aadhaar number, inmates' bank accounts will be opened by State Bank Of India and it will be linked to Aadhaar, said a senior prison officer. Earlier, central ...

Earlier this year, as per the Finance Act, 2017, the government made it mandatory to quote Aadhaar number while filing income tax returns, with effect from 1 July 2017. For this purpose, you need to link your Aadhaar with the permanent account number (PAN). The Central Board of Direct Taxes had ...

Hindu Business Line
Have you linked your Aadhaar with your MF investments? If you have not initiated the process yet, you may be in for trouble if you want to redeem your units next month. The countdown has started. With no official confirmation on extension of the deadline and just three weeks left to comply with the ...

Dubai: The Indian Consulate General reiterated in a press release issued on Tuesday, that non-resident Indians (NRIs) don't need to link Aadhaar, India's biometric identity card, to their Permanent Account Number (PAN) issued by the Income Tax authorities. The requirement of quoting the Aadhaar ...

Times Now
New Delhi: Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma took Twitter to announce that they have tied the nuptial knot, hence ending weeks of speculation over the subject. The duo, famously called as 'Virushka', also promised each other to be in love 'forever'. People were left in awe after looking at their pictures as ...

The Tribune
People queue up at the Aadhaar centre at the post office in Amritsar on Monday. photo: Sunil kumar. Tribune News Service. Amritsar, December 11. The Aadhaar correction and modification service, started at the local General Post Office (GPO) a few months ago, is getting a good response, say officials.

Hindustan Times
“We have 196 Aadhaar machines currently working in Pune district with 84 machines in Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) area and 49 active centres in Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) area. In the next few days, we are going to bring in 50 more units,” said tehsldar Vikas Bhalerao.

Times Now
Her plan was, however, foiled, thanks to the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI)'s 12-digit Aadhaar number that uses biometrics and demographic data. Swathi, along with her boyfriend Rajesh, killed her husband Sudhakar Reddy and set his body ablaze in a forest on November 26. The lady ...

Earlier, the CBSE asked affiliated schools to set up enrolment centres and assist students who don't have Aadhaar. Not only students, their families as well as staff would be able to use them. Apart from CBSE schools, Mumbai's Birla College has already set up an application desk. RA Podar College ...

When you submit these details and move on to the next page, you will be asked for your Aadhaar or Aadhaar enrollment ID. At this stage, you also have to choose the mode of submission of required documents. You can use the Aadhaar-based eKYC method, or send scanned documents with a digital ...

The Quint
A bandh called by the BJP and Hindu organisations in Uttara Kannada district turned violent on Monday after mobs went on a rampage, throwing stones at shops and prayer houses, and indulging in arson. The bandh was called to protest the killing of Hindu activist Paresh Mesta. The mob set fire to the ...

The Telegraph
Though the food minister did show reluctance to accept Santoshi Kumari starved to death, he also said he was not on the same page with chief minister Das over some aspects of the case and that chief secretary Rajbala Verma, who had earlier this year ordered ration cards without Aadhaar seeding be ...

But if you are eligible to obtain an Aadhaar, it is mandatory for you to link your Aadhaar to your PAN. Aadhaar has to be quoted in your income tax return for FY 2017-18, when it is being filed. An exception will apply only if you are a foreign citizen or a non-resident or a super senior citizen (i.e., above 80 ...

Problems regarding the Aadhaar card continue to harass people, especially pensioners. Issues such as failure to link Aadhaar to their pension accounts, or fingerprints not registering for the biometric data, etc have resulted in the pensions of many being stopped. Resolving them to restart the pensions ...

Deccan Chronicle
The Centre has directed the regional coordinators of PMU to ascertain Aadhaar seeding of all the beneficiaries has been completed by the state governments. The Centre will release funds only if Aadhaar seeding is complete, and has asked the state to send the lists only after the process is complete.

The Tribune
The Maharashtra government had earlier this month scrapped a move to link all the applications with the Aadhaar cards of those applying for the farm loan waiver. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had earlier stated that Aadhaar cards were necessary to identify bogus borrowers who may have availed ...

The New Indian Express
The identity of the beneficiaries will be verified through Aadhaar based biometric authentication. The buyers details will be captured in the PoS device deployed at the retailers end. All the transaction details and the fertilisers stocks at the dealers and retailers points will be tracked online in the Integrated ...

Outlook India
In view of inclement weather, officials were directed to mobilise all resources to ensure adequate availability of food grains and LPG, besides other essential commodities, he added. Reviewing the status of division wise target of ration cards for Aadhaar seeding, the Minister assigned the target of 31,000 ...