Yes, you read it right! You are bound to link Aadhaar card with your mobile number now.
Not too long ago when people in India were asked to enrol for the Aadhaar, little we knew what’s government is up to. In the last few months, however, the government has made it clear that Adhaar is going be the proof of you being a citizen of India and your existence as well. After making Aadhaar Card mandatory for Passport, Pan Card, IT Returns and many other important filings, the government of India has set its eye on 1.19 billion mobile subscribers in India.
According to the latest directive by Telecom operators, every mobile phone user in India will have to link Aadhaar Card with Mobile Number now. The directive is applicable for existing and new mobile subscribers, which means if you fail to link your mobile number with Aadhaar card, you may be surprised to find yourself disconnected from the digital world.
But wait, you don’t have to panic!
Considering the fact that many PILs against making Aadhaar Card mandatory is pending before the supreme court, you have enough time to act upon the new directive from telecom providers. The deadline to link Aadhaar card with the mobile number is February 2018. Albeit, Telecom providers have already started sending messages to their subscribers to link Aadhaar card with their mobile number.
Link Aadhaar Card with Mobile Number: Why Is It Mandatory?
In February this year, in Lokniti Foundation case, Supreme court had asked the government of India to verify all the mobile numbers within a year. The objective was to avoid the misuse of the mobile number by criminals and fraudsters and terrorist. The government found Aadhaar as the best way to get the job done in an efficient manner within the stipulated time frame.
Despite the efforts made by the government and telecom operators in the last few months, only 25% of mobile phone users have linked their Aadhaar card. Therefore the government has asked telecom operators to set a deadline to adhere with the supreme court verdict.
There are many who are still sceptical about the safety of personal information collected via Aadhar card. And, with the involvement of private companies, it could be more concerning. Therefore, to ensure the security of personal information, the government has defined the collection policies for telecom providers as well. No telecom provider can save biometrics of mobile subscribers. Telecom operators are bound to encrypt the collected biometrics and must send to UIDAI directly. Any form of storage of biometrics by telecom operator is a criminal offence punishable up to 3 years under the Aadhaar Act 2016.
How to Link Aadhar With Mobile Number
Unfortunately, just like a Pan Card, mobile subscribers can’t link their Aadhaar with the mobile number online. Every mobile subscriber will have to pay a visit to a service centre of his telecom provider. Linking Aadhaar with the mobile number online could be risky as fraudsters are already started taking advantage of linking Aadhaar card with bank accounts online, and people have lost their hard earned money.