NRIs, PIOs don’t need to link bank accounts with Aadhaar, UIDAI clarifies

NRIs and PIOs are not required to link bank accounts and other services with Aadhaar, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) said today while instructing various implementation agencies to work out a mechanism to verify the status of such individuals.

It said the Prevention of Money laundering Rules 2017 and the Income Tax Act clearly stipulate that the linking of bank accounts and PAN respectively, “is for those persons who are eligible to enroll for Aadhaar.”

It said all central ministries and departments, state governments and other implementing agencies should bear in mind that Aadhaar as an identity document can be sought only from those eligible for it under Aadhaar Act and that most NRIs/PIOs/ OCIs may not be eligible for its enrolment.

GOPIO has been campaigning on this issue with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and several members of the parliament during their visit to New York.

The Aadhaar-issuing body said several representations had been received about problems faced by Non-Resident Indians (NRIs), Person of Indian Origin (PIOs) and Overseas Citizens of India (OCI) where Aadhaar was being demanded with regard to various services and benefits.

It said that some Departments and implementing agencies were asking NRIs/OCIs/PIOs to submit or link their Aadhaar for availing services and benefits, despite the fact that they were not entitled to the 12-digit biometric identifier.

“The laws regarding submitting/linking of Aadhaar for availing the services/benefits apply to the residents as per the Aadhaar Act 2016… Most of the NRIs/PIOs/OCIs may not be eligible for Aadhaar enrollment as per Aadhaar Act…,” the UIDAI said in a note dated November 15 to central ministries and states.

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