India Aadhaar - Multipurpose Identification Card in India

A very popular and controversial talk in the country is going about a program called Multipurpose National ID Card or Unique ID Card, codenamed "Aadhaar". India Aadhaar is a unique program which aims at providing the citizens of India with uniqueness, as per their biometrics and some other details. Moreover, it aims at acting as a liaising thing between many organizations linking all of them into one. Read this post to know more about India Aadhaar, the Multipurpose National Identity Card.

One of the currently hottest and controversial topics is the UID, also known as Unique Identification. It has been given a unique name India Aadhaar. It is a program conducted by the UIDAI. Read this post for further information on India Aadhaar.

What is UID or India Aadhaar?

UID, Unique Identification also known as India Aadhaar is a program which aims at providing the citizens of India a unique identification. This identification will be used all over the country and will be valid for maintaining things all the way round to the point. India Aadhaar will actually be a number which the candidate will be able to use in various places and for various purposes. It is however, as known, not mandatory that everyone must apply for the India Aadhaar system. However, if they do not apply, then they are surely going to face a lot of problems in those fields where the India Aadhaar number will be made mandatory as they will not be having the number with themselves.

This unique number database system will be maintained by Unique Identification Authority of India, the UIDAI.

What is UIDAI

UIDAI is that authorized organization, which will be responsible for making the Aadhaar project a successful project. It was established in February 2009. The full name of UIDAI is Unique Identification Authority of India. It will be the organization responsible for maintaining the numerical database for providing the India Aadhaar, however not actually responsible for providing the citizens with the India Aadhaar Card. It will be providing the citizens with the Aadhaar number with respect to their biometrics and some other details like birth date etcetera.

The chairman of UIDAI, or the Unique Identification Authority of India is Mr. Nandan Nilekani and the Ram Sewak Sharma has been appointed as the Director General of UIDAI.

About the Chairperson – Nandan Nilekani

Born in a middle class family of Bangalore, Karnataka, Mr. Nandan Nilekani, is the chairman of the Unique Identification Authority of India. Father of Nandan Nilekani, Mohan Rao Nilekani was a General Manager at Mysore and had frequent transfers from one place to another and never remained statically only at Bangalore. His mother, Durga Rao Nilekani was a house wife.

Mr. Nandan Nilekani - Chairman, UIDAI

The childhood of Nandan Nilekani can be marked by the sudden transfers of his father Mr. Mohan Rao Nilekani and his constant shifting of places of shelter. Nandan Nilekani did not complete his education like others did, doing their studies till matriculation from one places and doing the higher studies from some other college or something like that. First of all, Nandan, studied Bishop Cotton Boys School Bangalore, and then did his higher studies at St. Joseph's High School Dharwad. Next he moved to IIT Mumbai and gained the graduation (B.Tech) degree and was the guy who can actually control things handily.

Next, he and some other members founded the India's National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM) and when later because of some issue, they left the company and decided to form another company which today is popular as Infosys. It was Nandan Nilekani who served as the MD and the CEO of the company from 2002 to 2007 and left it in 2009. However, now he has been assigned as the chairman of the UIDAI and has to do a comparatively tougher work perhaps.

Number Schema of India Aadhaar

As told, the India Aadhaar Card is totally based upon a special number schema. The number schema of India Aadhaar is something like this –

1. India Aadhaar cards will have 16 digit numbers in them. However, only 12 digits will be opened to a normal public.
2. The other 4 digits will not be known to the public, however will be as a secret to them.
3. Upon the loss of the UID number, the card holder will have to go through a series of processes for the Identity Check and perhaps, since this process is a bit expensive, they will have to pay a small sum of money to the authority.

Number Schema

4. As shown in the picture above, the India Aadhaar number schema will actually have not even 12 digits but only 11 digits. The 1st number will be the Implicit Version Number while the second, be the Check digit. So, that means that the Aadhaar number will only have 11 digits which really matter.
5. The numbers in UID will be non repeating and non traceable or predictable and will be generated through computer algorithms.

Identifiers of India Aadhaar

There are several types of identifiers that can be used to link up with the upcoming enormous identification system known as India Aadhaar. For example – they can be as follows – driver license, ration card, election photo identity, PAN card, passport, NREJA job card, health insurance card, bank account number, post office account number, mobile phone number, landline phone number, email addresses. These shall be the criteria which the resident of the card may detail the authority with.

ID Mapper for India Aadhaar

This is a really fantastic system and I will also discuss about it later in the article. The ID Mapper would be a real help to the UIDAI and the card holder which is going to be the resident of the card. Now the question arises – What is the ID Mapper and what will be its work? The thing is that ID Mapper would be a system which will be used to link the details of a particular resident into one. For example, there will be many India Aadhaar Identifiers like phone number, UID number and the Bank account details. All could be linked into one and then centralized.

If this comes up successfully then surely, the government will be benefited and also the resident. The resident shall acquire full flexibility to change the identifiers through a systematic process.

PINS in India Aadhaar

For a successful authentication of the resident that he/she is the actual owner of the card, UIDAI may run a process of PINs. Though the India Aadhaar system will be having the biometric marker like fingerprints and many other details which may be enough for authenticating the resident, UIDAI may run a system of Static and Dynamic PINs for Aadhaar.

This PIN system will resemble very much to the secret PIN system in ATM cards. For real steel authentications, the UIDAI may run a system of a 4 digit static PIN which shall be known only to the owner of the card and shall be changeable only by the owner of the card. However, upon even good authentication grade, the UIDAI may run the system of dynamic PINs.

Other Identification Systems Which Inspire India Aadhaar

Since times immemorial, there have been many identifiers and there have been a multitude of identification cards, be it school ID cards, organizational ID cards, PAN cards whatever. However, there are some systems which have inspired India Aadhaar System to work a little bit differently.

For example, the identification processes and systems in US and Italy have undergone various changes and in order to increase the length of carrying these systems, they had to carry out various changes to their identification system. In the past, a lot of times the numeric systems have been built but have to be taken care well. However, at times they have undergone several changes too. Consider the barcode system which was assigned to register the products and for easy business purposes. In US they followed the system of AUniversal Product code in barcode designs, while in Europe they followed a system of European Article Number, however, later when, for easy business purposes and to fulfill the demands in this global business era, they had to combine both of them into one and today we have only barcode number which is really universal. Also, think about the computer addressing system. When the number of computers increased, it also had to through various changes. The computer addressing systems were a bit different. However, later they had to be combined for globalizing the Internet services and the computer addressing system.

India Aadhaar Logo

It is one of the most controversial topics related to India Aadhaar. Some intellectuals said it was not right to have a logo for such a big system because it sounds childish. However, some others said that we must have a logo so as to differentiate this card from the other systems. Finally the UIDA has announced a logo and has unveiled it. It is as in the picture below –

India Aadhaar Logo

In the above shown picture, as you can see, the logo consists of a finger print which marks the biometric theories of India Aadhaar and it is surrounded by the ultimate source of energy, the Sun. This is the India Aadhaar logo.

Appreciations to India Aadhaar

According to me, following are the good factors of the India Aadhaar system –

1. Centralizing and Linking Many Into One - I think that this feature of mapping all the organizational and institutional details of the card holder into one is one of the best features of India Aadhaar system.

2. Less Corruption - Now, since they will have all the details centralized, there will be far less chances for corruption. The authorities may look up into the details whenever required checking upon the transactions etc. done by a particular card holder.

3. The Card and the Number System - Each person will have a card and a 12 digit number which will be unique, is a real nice concept. It will act as a mirror of the person, civically. Moreover, there shall be far less confusions created by so many cards at once, however, the not influencing other cards like ATMs and all, but linking passports etc. into it, may be a great idea.

4. Employment - According to an estimate, for the successful running of this program, the organization UIDAI may require as many as 1000 new employees to take care of the system. So it is something to gaze at because employment nowadays is a golden opportunity.

Ironies to India Aadhaar

Also, there are some ironies to this system; they are as follows according to me.

1. Excessive Expenses - According to an estimate, for the successful start and carrying on of this system, which we know as India Aadhaar, a sum of as much as 6 billion rupees will be spent and I think this is not a really small amount of money. There were not much problems regarding this identification system and spending 6 billion rupees on such a subject defying the importance of other needs is not a really good idea.

2. Privacy Issues - What if anyone could enter any individuals details and check out getting all the details of him. This is the biggest irony to the India Aadhaar system as there are many controversial topics regarding whether the UID system will actually remain safe.

Contact Details of India Aadhaar

This is the postal address which can be used for accessing more information about India Aadhaar -

Postal Address - Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI),
Planning Commission, Govt. of India (GoI),
3rd Floor, Tower II, Jeevan Bharati Building,
Connaught Circus,
New Delhi - 110001.

Email -

Individual Contact Details -
1. Mr. Nandan Nilekani (Chairman) –
2. Mr. R. S. Sharma (Directory General and Managing Director) –

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Author: Satish Kumar Pranatharthyharan23 May 2010 Member Level: Gold   Points : 1

Dear Mr.Gyan, Well, this is a comprehensive article I have ever read so far in a website. Congratulations to taking so much pain and delivering goods at ISC. My best wishes.

Author: Ravi Shankar23 May 2010 Member Level: Platinum   Points : 2

It is one of the finest and most informative article based in some intricacies among the technicalities of the project.

Great to see all the details at one place, the author might have complete knowledge about the project and definitely this article going to win lot of appreciations among the lot.

Guest Author: Kumar kannan17 Dec 2012

It is a fantastic scheme to indentify the Indian Citizens. Eenthough There is no arrangements for NRI people who are staying in abroad for employment based on agreements.During the agreement period they will not allow to return to own country.It will be more fantastic if any ways for them as well.

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