Everyday we receive communication from Telecom, Banks, Gas, Income Tax Deptt., EPFO, Passport, Scholarships, Concession in railway tickets, Mid-day meals, Public Distribution Benefits to receive from to update Aadhar? Not long ago, many believed Aadhaar will end up as an optional scheme, meant mainly for the poor who would need it for subsidies.
Very quickly Aadhaar has spread to all spheres of life, and soon it could be as vital to Indians as the social security number is to the US citizens.
Former Chief Election Commissioner T S Krishnamurthy has even favoured doing away with voter ID card and considering Aadhaar as the sole identity proof for voting.
Below are 10 most vital transactions where it is mandatory to cite your Aadhaar number:
1. Bank account
Aadhaar is mandatory for opening a bank account. Also, all existing bank account holders have to provide their Aadhaar numbers to their banks. It is also mandatory for any financial transaction of Rs 50,000 and above.
2. Income tax return
The government has made it compulsory to mention Aadhaar for filing of income tax return.
3. PAN card
Aadhaar has been made compulsory if you apply for a permanent account number (PAN). An existing PAN has to be linked with Aadhaar number.
4. Employment Provident Funds Account
Employees' Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has made it compulsory to link provident fund account with Aadhaar.
5. Mobile phone number
You have to provide your Aadhaar number to get a new phone number. The existing number also has to be linked with Aadhaar.
Students who apply for central scholarships and other financial assistance schemes need to provide their Aadhaar number.
Ministry of External Affairs has listed Aadhaar card as one of the mandatory documents for applying for a passport. You won’t be able to get your passport without Aadhaar.
8. Concession on railway tickets
To plug misuse and leakages, Indian Railways has made it mandatory to quote Aadhaar to avail of concessions on railway tickets.
9. Mid-day meal
Students of government-funded schools will not be able to get mid-day meal without Aadhaar card.
10. PDS benefits
Public distribution benefits have been linked to Aadhaar. Individuals will have to link Aadhaar with ration cards to get all the PDS subsidy benefits. It has been made mandatory for almost all welfare schemes of Central government.
While Aadhaar is compulsory to avail of most government services, now even the private sector has started relying on it. That is a sure sign that Aadhaar is here to stay and become your most important identity proof. Employers are beginning to use Aadhaar to verify their potential employees, a move that could see the week-long verification process reducing to less than 15 minutes, and hiring costs falling dramatically. It is also helping make the process paperless — no need to provide documents that show, say, the proof of residence.
With Aadhaar being adopted even by the private sector, true to its name, it is going to become the basis of most of your business and official transactions soon. In addition to scores of other compulsory Aadhaar uses, the government may soon become it mandatory for buying shares and mutual funds too. The government is planning to link Aadhaar to financial market transactions to try and curb sharp practices such as conversion of black money into white through the stock market.
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