Last week, we went early on Friday morning to get our Aadhar card made. There is a centre in the Chakkarpur market where they register 50 Aadhar cards everyday. We went 15 minutes late, and the counter closed. When we enquired in the office, we were told to come back today, Monday as they weren’t sure if they would open the office on Saturday owing to the Delhi elections.
So today we requested Molina to go at 7 am and get us a place in the queue and we reached at 8.15 to take up our place. We were sure that we will get our chance today since there were only 18 people before us in the queue. The first person had come at 4 am ….. All for an identity card !! Amazing. What was very encouraging was many of the people standing in the queue both on Friday and today were lower middle class and the poor and very few from the Middle class or upper middle class. It’s good that the Government has started the “Pahal” program for getting the subsidy on LPG cylinders and that has motivated many folks to get their Aadhar card. We have ofcourse gone and refused the subsidy, but wanted the Aadhar so that we too have the Government issued ID card.
Everyone patiently waited in the queue and no one jumped the queue… Many people were helping others to get the form filled and soon at 9.15, the old gentleman who seems to be the manager at this Aadhar centre arrived and everyone got ready to get their token …. Ah, not so quick. We heard the announcement that no applications would be taken today since the “one” person who had to do the biometrics and enter the details in the system was unwell and hadn’t come !!! Yes, the old gentleman tried shooing everyone off and I did stand my ground and told him to “behave”. He wasn’t doing us a favor, nor were we doing anyone a favor, so his behaviour was unnecessarily rude. Finally – we all just left, the poor guy who had come at 4 am was so disappointed.
Krishnan and I decided to give it a week and then to try again, but we didn’t anticipate Molina’s smart moves :):). Mom and she went to the Chakkarpur mandi (market) that brings fresh produce on Mondays and Thursdays. Halfway through, mom called me to say that there was this guy who was also authorised to make the Aadhar card and was available till 7 pm. So as soon as Molina and mom got back, we went to this store and the entire process of biometrics got done and we got our application registered !! Molina had seen this boy near her house and saw that he was helping people get the Aadhar card and the smart woman saw him at a different shop today and immediately stopped him and got Mom to speak to him and he in turn called us.
This also shows the “jugaad” that we Indians are so good at. Completely legit operations just being done for longer hours as its an Internet cafe.
Now, I have a few questions for the Government regarding the Aadhar card.
1. Why aren’t there more centres for getting the biometrics done ?
2. Why can’t the retina scan and fingerprinting be done on a smartphone ?
3. How do you ensure forged documents aren’t being used for date of birth etc.
4. How can the number of cards be reduced ? Can the Voters ID card and at some time, the PAN card be merged with the Aadhar card ?
5. Will the rapists be identified through their Aadhar card ? They really don’t deserve an identity :(:( and no second chance either.
6. What about the credit worthiness of an individual.. Can the Aadhar card merge with the CIBIL transunion or other ratings ?
7. How can the Aadhar card put a stop to the black money generation ?
Am sure there are other thoughts as well… This government is about action, so let’s help as well by doing our bit. Get identified, get your Aadhar card made now and a big thank you to smart Molina :):):)