For the next nine months at least, Nandan Nilekani, chairperson of India’s unique identification (UID) number authority, will not be leaving Indian shores. It will be the longest period in his professional life that he has never stepped out of the country.
|Nandan Nilekani makes a point. |
Photo: Raj K Raj / HT
The former Infosys head is even ready to miss the annual World Economic Forum at Davos in January 2010, which he has been attending for over a decade.
All so as to ensure he keeps the deadline he has set himself and provides the first UID number within the next 18 months. In an informal interaction with senior editors at Hindustan Times on Tuesday, Nilekani said he hoped to get UIDs issued to around 600 million Indians in the next five years. “Achieving our targets will be a 24x7 operation,” he said.
The UID authority will have its main office in Delhi, a technology hub in Bangalore and eight regional offices across the country.
“All government benefits will be linked with UID…We will involve civil society in making it popular,” Nilekani said. The UID will be a revenue generating, self-sustaining model with the authority charging money from users in the private sector.