An Aadhaar card is a unique identification number issued to every citizen of the country by UIDAI. It is as essential as a PAN card for a citizen and many use it as an ID proof. Mutual fund houses accept it as a part of the documentation for investments. If you have not enrolled for Aadhaar yet, now is the time to do so. The 12-digit unique identification number is based on your demographic and biometric data. This data is collected by UIDAI, which is an authority established by the Government of India in 2009. Let us discuss the significance of Aadhaar in detail.
What is Aadhaar card?
A 12-digit number, Aadhaar is generated on the biometric data and demographic information of a citizen. UIDAI is on a mission to provide efficient and transparent governance to the people of India through Aadhaar. There is a lifetime validity of an Aadhaar card, and it is acceptable across the country as an identity proof.
Aadhaar Cards Purpose and Uses
There are many uses of an Aadhaar card which has made it one of the most significant identity documentation in the country. Here are a few Aadhaar uses discussed below.
- Direct Benefit Transfer: The 12 digit identification number is used to get an LPG subsidy amount directly in the bank account. If you want to get this benefit, you need to visit the nearest distributor and get your Aadhaar linked to the LPG consumer number. You will also have to link the bank account to the LPG number to get the benefit.
- Passport: If you have an Aadhaar card, you will be able to get your passport within 10 days. As per the format, police verification will be done at a later stage as opposed to the previous rule where police verification was done before issuing the passport, and it consumed a lot of time. As per the new rule, if you need a new passport, aadhaar number is a must.
- Jan Dhan Yojana: Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana accepts Aadhaar number as the only document necessary to open the bank account. However, you can open an account with other documents as well.
- Digital Locker: Government has launched a digital locker facility for everyone storing their personal documents in the server of the Government. As a part of the signup process, you need to link your Aadhaar card number.
- Voter card: Aadhaar number will be linked to the voter ID, and this will help eliminate the bogus voters. After Aadhaar number is linked, it will become impossible for multiple voter ID card-holder to make any illegal use because the registration requires a voter cardholder to be present with their Aadhaar card to the polling booth for linking.
- Monthly pension: Pensioners will be required to register their Aadhaar card number to their respective departments in order to receive a monthly pension.
- Provident Fund: Similar to pension, the provident fund money will also be given to the account holder who has registered their Aadhaar number with employee provident fund organisation.
- Bank account: An e-aadhaar letter provided by UIDAI is acceptable by banks as proof to open a new bank account. It can serve as an address proof as well. There is no need to produce a bunch of documents for opening the account.
- Digital Life Certificate: An e-aadhaar linked digital life certificate is an initiative for pensioners. It will end the process where a pensioner had to be physically present at the agency to avail pension.
- SEBI: e-aadhaar is now accepted as a proof of address by SEBI for investing in the stock market.
Eligibility Criteria for Aadhaar Card
The eligibility criteria to get e-aadhaar is discussed below.
Any resident of India, including a newborn, is eligible for an Aadhaar card or an e-aadhaar card. Baal Aadhaar is for children below five and Aadhaar is for adults.
Foreigners staying in India and NRIs in India for more than 12 months are eligible for Aadhaar.
How do you apply for an Aadhaar Card?
Visit the nearest enrolment centre near your home. Here, you are required to fill out a form, submit your biometric data, and your retinal scan. You then need to submit your documents to verify your proof of address.
If you are looking for an Aadhaar centre near you, look at our list of Aadhaar Seva Kendras here.
After submitting your documents, your biometric data, and your retinal scan, the authority at the-aadhaar Seva Kendra will take your picture. You will then collect the acknowledgement slip that has your enrolment number that is used to check your status.
Documents required for Aadhaar card
Here is the list of documents required to apply for an Aadhaar card
You can submit any one of the following
- Ration card
- NREGS job card
- Government photo ID cards
- PAN card
- Photobank ATM card
- ECHS/CGHS photo card
- Driving license
- Voter ID
- Arms license
- Photo ID is issued by an authorised educational institution
- Photo credit card
- Certificate of identity with photo issued by gazetted officer or Tehsildar on a letterhead
- Kissan photo passbook
- Pensioner photo card
- Freedom fighter photo card
- Disability ID card or handicapped medical certificate
- Address card containing name and picture issued by the Department of Posts
Benefits of Aadhaar card
Identity card: Your Aadhaar card acts like a proof of identity and proof of address if your current address is there in the card. You can use it as proof of identity, proof of address, and proof of age, as all three details are present. Also, if you're looking to rent a home, then if you carry your Aadhaar card, the official will only enter your 12-digit number or ask you to scan your fingerprint, and all your details will be shared.
Availing subsidies: With the Centre's recent ruling to link Aadhaar numbers with ration cards, it has become easier to get subsidised foodgrain. Similarly, linking your Aadhaar card and LPG connection, as well as Aadhaar number and bank account can also give you subsidies.
Filing I-T returns: It is mandatory to now link your Aadhaar and PAN numbers, so unless you do so, you will not be able to file your income tax returns.
How to Receive an Aadhaar Card
Anyone can enrol for Aadhaar in three simple steps.
- Visit the official website of UIDAI and look for the nearest Aadhaar enrolment centre.
- Now fill up the enrolment form with your details.
- Provide the necessary documents and your biometrics which include your fingerprints and Iris scan.
- You will be handed an acknowledgement slip with a URN on it.
- You can use the URN to check the status of your Aadhaar card.
- You will receive a physical copy of your Aadhaar within 90 days of enrolment.
- You can download e-aadhaar from the website and use it in the same manner as you use the physical Aadhaar.
- Enrolment for Aadhaar is voluntary, and it is free of cost for everyone.
Some common questions about Aadhaar are answered here for you.
- What do you need to do if you lose your Aadhaar card?
If you have lost or misplaced your Aadhaar card, you do not need to panic. You can get a duplicate copy of the Aadhaar card by downloading the PDF or e-Aadhaar online by visiting the UIDAI website and accessing their online services.
2. How long is an Aadhaar valid for?
Your aadhaar card has lifetime validity.
3. Can an Aadhaar be made online?
Enrolment of Aadhaar is a one-time physical procedure which should be done at the-aadhaar enrolment centre. You can visit the UIDAI website and search for an Aadhaar enrolment centre near you.
4. What is a PVC Aadhaar card?
An official statement has been issued by UIDAI informing Aadhaar cardholders to avoid making a plastic Aadhaar card. The card is not recognised because the QR code becomes dysfunctional because of printing errors. Original Aadhaar card issued by UIDAI or the downloaded version of Aadhaar printed on ordinary paper is valid.
5. What is an Order Aadhaar Reprint Service?
Launched by UIDAI, Order Aadhaar Reprint is a new service which allows the residents of the country to get their Aadhaar letter reprint by paying nominal charges. If Aadhaar letter has been misplaced or lost and if you want a new copy, you can use this service. Even if you have not registered your mobile number, you can use an alternate number for the service.
6. How can the date of birth or a person be validated?
There will be a flag in the Aadhaar database, which will indicate if the date of birth of a person is verified or declared.
7. Is Aadhaar mandatory?
Citizens who are eligible for Aadhaar can apply for an Aadhaar as per the provisions of Aadhaar Act. Similarly, agencies that provide services and benefits may choose to use-aadhaar in their system and might require that their customers provide-aadhaar number for these services.
8. What information is necessary to get an Aadhaar?
If you want to enroll for an Aadhaar card, you will have to provide your demographic and biometric information which includes your name, gender, address, date of birth, contact details which are email and mobile number and parent details for a minor. Your biometric information includes a photo, IRIS scan and 10 fingerprints scan.
9. Who needs an Aadhaar?
Aadhaar is only applicable to residents of the country. NRIs do not need an Aadhaar, and if a service provider asks for an Aadhaar card from an NRI, you can simply mention the fact that you are not a citizen of the country and Aadhaar is not applicable to you.
10. Can I update my information after a physical copy of Aadhaar has been issued to me?
Yes, it is possible to update your name, address, surname, date of birth and mobile number even after a physical copy of Aadhaar has been issued and delivered to you. You will have to visit the nearest enrolment centre and make an update request for the same. You might be asked to provide supporting documents for the purpose of updation of information.
11. Are there any charges for enrolment of Aadhaar?
No, there are no charges for enrolment for an Aadhaar. It is absolutely free of cost. However, you might have to pay nominal charges in order to make any updates or changes in your Aadhaar card.
12. How long will it take for the physical copy of Aadhaar to reach me?
A physical copy of Aadhaar will reach you within 90 days of your application. It will be delivered to your registered address by post, and you need to be present at the time of receiving it.