Policy

Home Ministry raises objection to note on duplication of work by UID, Population Register

Shishir Sinha New Delhi | Updated on November 09, 2011 Published on November 09, 2011

UIDtab

Cabinet likely to take up the issue shortly





The Union Home Ministry has raised objections on the Cabinet note to resolve the issue of duplication of work between the Unique Identity Authority (UID) and the National Population Register (NPR) of the Census office. The Cabinet is likely to take up this issue very soon.

A senior Government official in know of the development told Business Line, “There are mainly two points. First is related with the coverage by UID while the second is attached with duplication.” The issue of expense is also expected to be discussed, he added. The UID is mandated to issue unique identity number, popularly known as ‘Aadhaar' to every resident. This number will contain demographic and biometric information of individuals.

Biometric cards

Meanwhile, the NPR was asked to provide biometric cards to every resident. The NPR comes under the Home Ministry while the UID currently functions under the Planning Commission.

Earlier, it was agreed that both the agencies will share the data base. However, the census office refused to accept the data gathered by the UID. It believed that since there is no mandate on the presence of a Government-nominated person during the collection of data, it is not advisable. “Ultimately, both agencies will do the same work. This duplication could cost the exchequer thousand of crores. This needs to be addressed,” the official said. It is, unofficially, estimated that the exercise could cost Rs 35,000 crore-40,000 crore. Now, the UID authority is believed to have preparing for issuing more numbers. The UID authority has just weathered a controversy regarding financial and executive autonomy. The Member Secretary of the Planning Commission reportedly raised the question on the functioning of the authority. This issue was resolved after the Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission, Mr Montek Singh Ahluwalia, intervened. But this time, it could be a different thing altogether. The Planning Commission might need to convince various Ministries, the official clarified.

Shishir.s@thehindu.co.in

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Published on November 09, 2011
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