Over 40 crore people have downloaded Aadhaar cards from the website to use them as their identity proof, the authorities said on Monday.
“The number of people downloading Aadhaar on the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) website is on the rise with the number of average downloads of Aadhaar per day at 6 lakh. As on May 2, 2016, Aadhaar downloads have crossed 40 crore,” the authority said in a statement.
“The reasons for popularity of download of Aadhaar cards through website can be attributed to the increased usage of Aadhaar as proof of identity and also as proof of address by service providers and the ease with which the residents can download Aadhaar from UIDAI website,” it said.
The authority has generated identity proof of 100.93 crore people as on May 2.
The authority said that since the data in the electronic version of Aadhaar was the same as printed on the Aadhaar letter, the downloaded version of the card will have the same validity as Aadhaar card received by a resident through post.
It also said that the downloaded version has also been notified as a valid proof of identity and address by the Reserve Bank of India.
“Anyone who has misplaced his/her Aadhaar or is yet to receive Aadhaar card through post, can easily download an Aadhaar after providing certain details online. In case, a person does not remember the details, the Aadhaar can be downloaded and printed from the nearest authorised Aadhaar Kendra for a nominal fee of Rs.10,” UIDAI director general Ajay Bhushan Pandey said.
Central and state governments have linked various social sector schemes/projects to Aadhaar and have notified Aadhaar as a valid proof of identity and address.
As Aadhaar is being increasingly used as a proof of identity for availing various services, wider use of downloaded version of Aadhaar is expected.
The UIDAI statement assumes significance as it has come against the backdrop of resistance shown by opposition parties against the Centre’s encouragement to use it as a proof to take benefits of various government schemes.
Opposition parties had accused the government of compromising the data security of the country by motivating people to use Aadhaar cards.