After making Aadhaar mandatory for filing income tax returns and applying for PAN, the government has now moved to make Aadhaar mandatory for mobile phone connections.
According to a department of telecom (DoT) notification that was issued on Friday, the telecom operators have been directed to re-verify their existing subscribers — both prepaid and postpaid — through an Aadhaar-based eKYC process by February 6, 2018. This order follows the Supreme Court order of February 6, 2017 that Aadhaar-based eKYC verification should be done for all mobile phone numbers in the country.
“A meeting was held on 13.02.2017 in the department with the telecom industry wherein UIDAI, Trai and PMO representatives also participated to discuss the way forward to implement the directions of Hon’ble Supreme Court,” said the notification issued by DoT.
Telcos have been directed by the government to intimate their existing subscribers about the Aadhaar-based eKYC re-verification process through all means possible, including through advertisements in newspapers and text messages.
The licensees have also been directed to send a “verification code” to the mobile numbers of subscribers to ensure that SIM cards are physically available with the subscribers before initiating the e-KYC process.
The move comes on the heels of Aadhaar being made mandatory for filing income tax returns and applying for a permanent account number (PAN). It is another step by the government towards making the use of Aadhaar all-pervasive in India.