Three ordinary residents with high flying Planning Commission deputy chairperson Montek Singh Ahluwalia showcased their personal experiences on Friday to demonstrate that Nandan Nilekani led UIDAI delivers.
Ahluwalia received a duplicate copy of his misplaced Aadhaar letter amid glitter of cameras claimed to be downloaded from Unique Identification Authority's (UIDAI) public portal. This was done to show that getting an Aadhaar after enrollment is not difficult even if the Indian Posts fails to deliver your letter.
A reality check on the UIDAI's website showed that there is no provision of getting a duplicate Aadhaar letter. One can download his or her Aadhaar letter based on the acknowledgement slip at the time of enrollment.
The other three were there to show how the UIDAI's anywhere, anytime electronic know your customer (eKYC) system, first of its kind on a public platform, works. The service enables individuals to authorise service providers to receive electronic copy of their proof of identity and residence, similar to one giving a photocopy for paper KYC after online authentication.
Uday Pal, (62) from a below poverty line family, got his eKYC within second after a finger print authentication. Rita, (45) housewife from east Delhi, showed efficiency of online authentication based on one time password received on the mobile phones. The UIDAI used Ami Chand (71), a cataract operated person, was there to demonstrate iris (eye scan) based online authentication system, first of its kind in the world.
Any of the three authentication systems works on one principle. The information sought is scanned on real time basis in Aadhaar database and if it is there, the reply received is Yes. Or else, it says authentication failed.
"The e-KYC would enable one to seek a service without carrying any identity or residence proof documents," said AP Singh, deputy director general of UIDAI. For that to happen, the UIDAI will have to sign an agreement with individual service providers like telecom operators, LPG supplying companies and individual banks. "We would start the process soon," UIDAI chairperson Nilekani said.
Today was just a demonstration. The real challenge for UIDAI would quickness of authentication when millions of Aadhaar number holders use it at the same time. "We are braced up for the test," a UIDAI official said.