Process Begins to Issue Unique ID Number to all Indians

The Government of India recently notified setting up of a national authority to provide permanent ID number to each one of its over one billion citizens. The identification number will be provided by the National Authority for Unique Identify (UID), an entity under the Planning Commission. It will work in coordination with the National Population Register of the Home Ministry through the Registrar General of the Census, in accordance with the Indian Citizenship Act. The authority will work in cooperation with the similar bodies being set up at the state level.

The project is aimed at establishing citizenship, reducing identity related frauds, addressing security issues and preventing leakages in different government schemes. The UID would further facilitate people in availing basic government services like issuance of passports, driving licenses, Electoral Identity Cards, etc. Backed by intensive use of technology, it is expected to facilitate easy verification of a person's identity and enable a single communication to trigger address changes in all relevant agencies records.

To start with, the UID number will be assigned to all voters by building on current electoral roll data.

Progressively, other persons including those below 18 years of age will be added to the list. Photographs and biometric data will be added to make the identification foolproof, adding easy registration and information change procedures are also being envisaged for the benefit of the people.