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Aadhar... good or nightmare?

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Voice Of Bengal::Politics
S Mitra


Aadhar... good or nightmare?

Aadhar, is a unique 12 digit number given to every resident living in India. And yes, an NRI like me can have it and even a foreigner living in India can have it. This makes it a little confusing as it is really not a proof of citizenship then. But, one of the goals of UID is to identify the person taking benefit of Government benefits like gas subsidy and curb the corruption in the system with false information and profiles. Aadhar requires biometric data like eye scan, finger print to identify you clearly. It is also used to identify illegal immigrants in India coming mainly from Bangladesh or Nepal. While every developed country has a UID scheme of its own like SSN in USA, it is definitely a good idea to have an association of an Id with person and his/her assets. In USA, to get a job or to open a bank account or to buy a property, you have to use your SSN but it is not mandatory in all the services. As hacking increased all over the world - it is too unsafe to share one's SSN to any place unless certain and confirmed of its security. We understand that clearly.

The problem comes again in the implementation of Aadhar and vague or ever-changing laws or stipulation from Central Government run by present day's Md. Tuglok (Mr Modi). Aadhar will definitely stop corruption in public money disbursement like BPL people to avail government subsidy and may create a direct channel between Governments to beneficiary, bypassing local political meddling. Aadhar in bank account is also very useful to know who own the account - particularly to trace black money and terrorist activity. However, Aadhar to every mobile number is questionable as there is no particular benefit is involved other than Government sniffing. Because Government has biometric data and technically can wire-tape anybody in India - it can be misused by Indian Government without your knowledge. It could be both positive and negative just like a person's position can be easily ascertained by finding out mobile tower he was on. There was serval cases where culprits are found based on their location at the time of crime based on mobile tower his mobile was on. But other side of it is privacy, to what extent you want Government to monitor you and what is the guaranty that this would not be misused by someone or even state or central government itself? Of course, there should be a compromise and on top of that, there should be a communication from the Government to educate public about its benefits and potential pitfalls. None of these happens in India. It is always a dictate from Central Government to do it within a certain date.

One of the biggest problem of Aahar is people's lack of knowledge what it is for and I can clearly say more than 50% of India's population has probably no clue as of now what UID means, how is it different from voter card, who is eligible and why, why finger print is needed for it etc. It is same proposal like demonetization & digitization effort - while intent is good, a bad implementation created havoc to businesses. I am amazed while so much is spent on Modi' photo on publicity - there is no public relation effort to convince Aadhar to public at all. Modi, as usual hits the soft target - the general public first safe guarding his donors like big businesses. If he is really like corruption to come out - instead of his nationalized lecture or Maan ki baat, he should make every property registration mandatory with a Aadhar number to identify the owners (at least in all major cities) and publish it. This will easily bring out the benami properties to light as owners with no proper income will be exposed clearly to public, particularly one with no income but owner of a few flats or properties. But he chose not to pursue that - because these corrupt business people are the real donor of BJP and other political parties. So, clearly the purpose and implementation of Aadhar is questionable.

Aadhar is definitely NOT a proof of citizenship of India, its purpose is now changing and manipulated by center every day to get the best of it so that it can be in a more powerful position. Whether it is good or not is up to all Indian - but if it is not implemented properly it could be a real nightmare for a lot of people soon. Safety of Aadhar is utmost important - can Government assure that to all or is there a law to compensate you in case it fails.

Share your views or stories - because that will make everyone more knowledgeable.

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