The Indian government is considering giving AADHAAR cards to Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) and a decision on it is expected soon. The Indian MEA minister Sushma Swaraj recently revealed it, while inviting the Diaspora community to actively participate in India's growth story.
Asking the Diaspora to participate extensively in Indian government's various flagship programmes including Skill India, Digital India and Clean Ganga initiatives, she informed that the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi wants the AADHAAR card scheme to be extended to NRIs, thus eventually allowing them to authenticate their identity digitally.
"So far AADHAAR card has been given to those Indians who live in India. It is not for non-resident Indians. But you will be happy to know that the Prime Minister wants the card to be given to the NRIs the way it is issued to people living in India. He even wants it for OCI (Overseas Citizens of India card) holders. The matter is under our consideration," Swaraj informed the assembled Diaspora. However the minister also said that no time-frame has been formulated at this stage for achieving the goal.
The government has so far issued AADHAAR cards to over 92 crore citizens. Under the programme, every citizen is to be provided with a 12-digit unique identification number for which biometric information is collected. The AADHAAR number helps in availing various services and benefits provided by the Indian government.