The Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016 intends to provide for targeted delivery of subsidies and services to individuals residing in India by assigning them unique identity numbers, called Aadhaar numbers.
Every resident shall be entitled to obtain an Aadhaar number. A resident is a person who has resided in India for 182 days, in the one year preceding the date of application for enrolment for Aadhaar
To obtain an Aadhaar number, an individual has to submit the following information
At the time of enrolment, the individual will be informed of the following
To verify the identity of a person receiving a subsidy or a service, the government may require them to have an Aadhaar number. If a person does not have an Aadhaar number, government will require them to apply for it, and in the meanwhile, provide an alternative means of identification. Any public or private entity can accept the Aadhaar number as a proof of identity of the Aadhaar number holder, for any purpose. Aadhaar number cannot be a proof of citizenship or domicile.
The key functions of the UID authority include,
The UID authority will authenticate the Aadhar number of an individual, if an entity makes such a request. A requesting entity (an agency or person that wants to authenticate information of a person) has to obtain the consent of an individual before collecting his information. The agency can use the disclosed information only for purposes for which the individual has given consent.
The UID authority shall respond to an authentication query with a positive, negative or other appropriate response. However, it is not permitted to share an individual’s finger print, iris scan and other biological attributes.
The UID authority shall record the entity requesting verification of a person’s identity, the time of request and the response received by the entity. The purpose for which an individual's identity needs to be verified will not be maintained.
Biometric information such as an individual’s finger print, iris scan and other biological attributes (specified by regulations) will be used only for Aadhaar enrolment and authentication, and for no other purpose. Such information will not be shared with anyone, nor will it be displayed publicly, except for purposes specified by regulations.
In two cases, information may be revealed
A person may be punished with imprisonment upto three years and minimum fine of Rs 10 lakh for unauthorised access to the centralized data-base, including revealing any information stored in it. If a requesting entity and an enrolling agency fail to comply with rules, they shall be punished with imprisonment upto one year or a fine upto Rs 10,000 or Rs one lakh (in case of a company), or with both.
No court shall take cognizance of any offence except on a complaint made by the UID authority or a person authorised by it.
To view the complete Act, click here.
Source: PRS Legislative Research
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