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How has Aadhar system evolved so far?

Former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi remarked that “ for every 1 Rupee sent/allotted from Delhi, only 15 paisa reaches on the ground “. This statement explains the scale of intermediates and associated corruption, misappropriation of funds meant for welfare Delivery scheme.

To avoid the issue of intermediaries and to ensure beneficiaries receive their benefits, the UPA Government implemented a Biometric-based Unique Identification Number (Aadhar).

The renowned Technical expert Nandan Nilepani overview the project, the success and failure witnessed in UIP programmers of other nations like Brazil, Australia were studied.

  • Aadhar as Pilot Program in selected Districts (2011)
  • Voluntarily extended across India (2012)
  • Aadhar bill 2015 for targeted delivery placed (2016)
  • Supreme court allows only Government agencies to publish Aadhar (2016).

The NDA- ii Government introduced Aadhar bill- 2016 as a money bill and passed it in Lok Sabha. The Aadhar Act gave a statutory backing to the Aadhar program.

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Aadhar coupled with Jan Dhan bank accounts revolutionized the service delivery mechanism. Economic survey 2017 quoted “ JAM ”(Jan Dhan Aadhar mobile as facilitation of Direct Benefit Transfer. ), similarly the (ABBA) Aadhar Based Biometric Authentication used in public welfare and utility service weeded out corruption and malpractice, that had become entrenched in the Indian welfare delivery model.

(JAM) – Aadhar – Jan Dhan – Mobile – Direct Benefit Transfer

(ABBA)—Aadhar Based on Biometric Authentication – Targeted Delivery of welfare scheme.

Concerns –

  1. Aadhar UID is generated upon biometric data of Individual. Thus too collection and storage of biometric data, raised suspicions of state surveillance as well as Data branch.
  2. The failure of Aadhar Based Biometric Authentication (ABBA) due to internet failure of machine’s inability to detect biometric has deprived the poor of accessing benefits, as a witness in the case of Jharkhand girl starvation and subsequent death.

Way forwarded-

Aadhar has the potential to revolutionize the service delivery model and couple with DBT can empower poor, provided the Government take necessary steps to protect Aadhar Database and do allow alternate documents like identity proof until the teething troubles of technical infrastructure deficit gets resolved. With India’s economic growth rapidly, the gender of inclusive growth and power alleviation can be achieved if Adhaar is used properly.

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