Hyderabad: Unauthorised Aadhaar enrollment centres which collect data, iris scans and biometric details of applicants have sprung up across TS. Applying at these illegal centres will not get applicants Aadhaar cards and may lead to theft of personal data.
Ranga Reddy district officials have booked 14 cases against unauthorised Aadhaar enrollment centres. Official sources from UIDAI and MeeSeva told DC that 500 illegal Aadhaar uploads have been done across the state.
A preliminary inquiry by officials revealed that illegal operators have procured UIDAI software and equipment like biometric readers and iris scan units.
Authorised Aadhaar enrollment agents at MeeSeva get Rs 15 as commission for uploading each application. But unauthorised agents at some MeeSeva centres are collecting Rs 200 to Rs 300 for each upload. Illegal Aadhaar enrollers are collecting up to Rs 500 by visiting applicants’ houses. TS IT secretary Jayesh Ranjan said action would be taken against those behind illegal enrollment centres.
MeeSeva consultant A. Pridhvi Raj said they have issued permissions to 480 MeeSeva centres to accept Aadhaar applications across Telangana. “Except these centres all others are fake. Applicants will not get Aadhaar cards if they approach them,” he said. The list of approved MeeSeva centres will be uploaded soon.
RR district joint collector-2 Amrapali Kata said officials had identified 14 unauthorised Aadhaar agents in the district and have filed criminal cases against them. “Apart from criminal cases the UIDAI imposes a penalty of up to Rs 25,000 and MeeSeva suspends the agency for four months,” she said.
Illegal Aadhaar enrollers who are not connected to MeeSeva centres will be booked under Section 420 and under the IT Act.
The process of identifying illegal Aadhaar enrollment centers will be taken up by officials of the remaining nine districts next week.
MeeSeva officials said that Aadhaar cards will be generated only if details of an applicant are uploaded along with the digital signature of the authorised supervisor of a MeeSeva centre. “If an unauthorised person uploads it with a dummy signature or without a signature the application will be rejected,” a MeeSeva official said.
Pass in UIDAI test must for authorisation in TS
During the government of Mr N. Kiran Kumar Reddy in united AP officials concentrated on speedy enrollment for Aadhaar cards and about 300 MeeSeva centers were established during that time under the supervision of then IT minister Ponnala Laxmaiah.
For speedy enrollments the government had issued permissions to all MeeSevas apart from setting up Designated Photo Location (DPL) centers. Three IT firms were given contracts for issuing Aadhaar software.
After the formation of TS the government gave the contract to only one firm and MeeSeva centers that had obtained permissions from the TS IT department. These are the only authorised centers at present.
Although the government issued authentication to only one firm organisers of some MeeSeva centers are continuing to enroll for Aadhaar cards informally using software provided by previous firms.
The Telangana government has issued permission only to those organisers who had appeared for the online test conducted by UIDAI and has passed it. A supervisor and an assistant supervisor from each MeeSeva centre appeared for the test. Organisers from only 480 centers got eligibility and their digital signatures were integrated with UIDAI software.
Following this, the other MeeSeva agents automatically lost their authorisation. However, several organisers of MeeSeva centers are using the earlier UIDAI software and are uploading the Aadhaar details of applicants which are being rejected by UIDAI.
Meanwhile, officials have found that many people who are not connected to MeeSeva centers have also procured the software from other sources. The UIDAI has provided Aadhaar software to all authorised agents. Only supervisor or assistant supervisor of MeeSeva centers who have passed UIDAI’s test are authorised and their signatures are stored in the UIDAI server.