The Unique Identification Authority of India( UIDAI) has released a revised handbook for registrars and organisations that want to know more about how the government’s ambitious projcect Aadhar will be implemented. The handbook provides an overview about Aadhar along with it’s various applications.
The report also includes information about Aadhar based micro payments system and Aadhar applications which will soon be functional. The manual is mainly aimed at Aadhar Registrars which would include both Government and Private Sector Agencies.
Download Aadhaar Handbook for Registrars
What is Aadhaar ?
1. Introduction to Aadhaar
The inability to prove identity is one of the biggest barriers preventing the poor from accessing benefits and subsidies. No nationally accepted, verified identity number exists in the country that both the residents and agencies can use with ease and confidence. Different service providers also often have different requirements in the documents they demand from the residents, the forms that require filling out and the information they collect on the individual.
Such duplication of effort and identity silos increase the overall cost of identification and cause inconvenience to the resident. Any process that uniquely identifies a resident and ensures instant identity verification would help to reduce transaction costs, transform delivery of a host of social welfare programs and help to eliminate duplicate identities and fraud. The savings on this account can be immense and today when States are fiscally stressed, freeing up of resources would provide the desired flexibility in either extending the welfare net or increasing the benefits under the existing programs or simply improving the fiscal situation .
Keeping the above in mind, the Unique Identification number (Aadhaar) has been conceived by the Government of India as a means for residents to clearly and uniquely verify their identity anywhere in the country. This handbook is meant to give an overview of Aadhaar, the process to generate Aadhaar numbers, use its authentication services and update it on an ongoing basis. Detailed process manuals, which will be available on the UIDAI website, may be referred for implementation.
Previous attempts at building ‘unique’ databases have been beset by quality issues and challenges in the lack of consistent implementation. This project therefore has defined detailed guidelines and templates for the same; especially keeping in mind that Aadhaar will be built through a network of Registrars and enrolment agencies dispersed across the country. The success of the project will be strongly determined by the quality of data collected; as such all partners may therefore keep in mind the need to adhere to these guidelines.
As our partners, Registrars are requested to share feedback extensively and engage with the UIDAI in making this a robust and successful exercise. The handbook and the manuals will be updated on the basis of feedback and will be posted on our website on a continuous basis.
2. Aadhaar Overview
Aadhaar, which means ‘foundation’ in many Indian languages, has the following Features and Benefits:
1. One Aadhaar = 1 beneficiary: Aadhaar is a unique number, and no resident can have a duplicate number since it is linked to their individual biometrics; thereby identifying fake and ghost identities which result in leakages today. Savings from eliminating duplicates and fakes through Aadhaar-based identification will further enable governments to expand benefits to other eligible residents.
2. Portability: Aadhaar is a universal number, and agencies and services can contact the central Unique Identification database from anywhere in the country to confirm a beneficiary’s identity.
3. Inclusion of those without any existing identity documents: A problem in reaching benefits to poor and marginalized residents is that they often lack the identification documents they need to receive State benefits; the ‘Introducer’ system which has been approved for data verification for the UIDAI will enable such residents to establish an identity.
4. Electronic benefit transfers: the UID-enabled-Bank-Account network will offer a secure and low cost platform to directly remit benefits to residents without the heavy costs associated today with benefit distribution; the leakages in the current system will also be stemmed as a result.
5. Aadhaar-based authentication to confirm entitlement delivered to the beneficiary: the UIDAI will offer online authentication services for agencies who wish to validate a resident’s identity; this service will enable confirmation of the entitlement actually reaching the intended beneficiary.
6. Improved services through increased transparency: Clear accountability and transparent monitoring would significantly improve access and quality of entitlements to beneficiaries and the agency alike
7. Self-service puts residents in control: Using Aadhaar as an authentication mechanism, residents should be able to access up-to-date information about their entitlements, demand services and redress their grievances directly from their mobile phone, kiosks or other means. In the case of self-service on the resident’s mobile, security is assured using two-factor authentication (i.e. by proving possession of the resident’s registered Mobile Number and knowledge of the resident’s Aadhaar PIN). These standards are compliant with the Reserve Bank of India’s approved standards for Mobile Banking and Payments. (Please see Annexure for how mobile phone can be used for Aadhaar enabled applications)
For the rest – Download the Aadhar Handbook for Registrars at the link below