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India’s ID project catches fancy of US lawmakers

world Updated: Jul 23, 2009 17:05 IST

PTI
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With work poised to begin on providing unique identification cards to all Indians, the ambitious project has already caught the attention in the US, with lawmakers asking the government why it could not implement a similar project in Washington.

“So they (India) are taking on a humongous scale something that we have been struggling with for 20 years,” John Cornyn, the Republican Senator from Texas, said this week during a Congressional hearing on the country’s employment verification system.

Ex-Infosys Chairman Nandan Nilekani has taken over as head of an authority that will work on the project of giving unique identification numbers and cards to all citizens.

“The predicted cost is three billion pounds for 1.2 billion citizens and will replace what right now is 20 different proofs of identity that are available and require in the words of the gentleman who’s been appointed to head up this project a ubiquitous online database, and that will have to be impregnable to protect against loss of information,” Cornyn said.

He is also the Co-Chair of the Friends of India Caucus in the Senate.

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