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‘Aadhaar not to be must for Modicare’

Under the RSBY which exits in 13 states, only 30 million cards were issued for an enrolment list against 54 million beneficiaries, forcing the government to junk the model.

india Updated: Apr 15, 2018 22:48 IST
Jatin Gandhi
Jatin Gandhi
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Aadhaar,Modicare,National Health Protection Scheme
An Indian visitor gives a thumb impression to withdraw money from his bank account with his Aadhaar or Unique Identification (UID) card.(AFP FIle Photo)

The government will not insist on Aadhaar and identification documents such as ration card would be enough to avail the National Health Protection Scheme (NHPS), an official linked to the project said on Sunday.

A voter card, driving licence, ration card or any other “government prescribed identification card” would allow families to be included in the list of beneficiaries that was being compiled, the official said of the scheme that will provide health cover to the poor under the Modi government’s ambitious Ayushman Bharat plan.

“The decision (not to insist of Aadhaar) has been taken due to the sensitivity involved
with Aadhaar,” said the official, while speaking on the condition of anonymity.

The Supreme Court is hearing a clutch of petitions challenging the 12-digit unique biometric number on the grounds that it invades privacy and deprives people of benefits such as subsidised ration. The government says Aadhaar is meant to check pilferage, ensure that benefits reach the needy and also prevent corruption.

The government has already begun collecting data for NHPS, which will offer an insurance cover of Rs 5 lakh to every vulnerable family that will be indentified on the basis of socio-economic caste census data (SECC). Around 101 million families and 500 million people will benefit from Ayushman Bharat that also aims to provide comprehensive primary healthcare.

A pilot each of SECC verification would be completed in Haryana and Uttar Pradesh by April 19. Gram sabhas through village health workers were going door-to-door to collect and updated data, the official said.

SECC was conducted for the first time in 2011 to identify economically and socially weaker sections of population.

The NHPS verification process involves adding mobile numbers, identification details of the beneficiaries and updating records of those who have shifted location or died.

“Once names are included in the list, no cards will be necessary for availing the benefits. We have moved away from the card-based model followed under the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana,” the official said .

Under the RSBY which exits in 13 states, only 30 million cards were issued for an enrolment list against 54 million beneficiaries, forcing the government to junk the model.

A list-based model that automatically entitles those named in the government data base will now be in use. Each family will have an e-card details of which would be accessible through a QR code.

First Published: Apr 15, 2018 22:47 IST