UIDAI in talks with Indian Railways to help it to improve its services
Moneylife Digital Team 01 July 2010

The UIDAI chief has said that Aadhaar can be used for the betterment of over 1.4 million railway employees

With the Indian Railways catering to crores of people and employing over a million strong staff, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) saw a major role for itself in helping the public sector undertaking (PSU) behemoth deliver better services through the use of unique identification 'Aadhaar' numbers, reports PTI.

"Railways have been pioneers in use of IT. We think there are many applications where Aadhaar authentication can be used to deliver better services to the people. We are talking to Railways," UIDAI chairman Nandan Nilekani said today.

He said Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) had just held preliminary meetings with the Railway board.

"For us Aadhaar adoption in public service application is a very important goal... and we look forward to working with them (Railways) on that," Mr Nilekani told reporters on the sidelines of a symposium organised by CRIS.

On the utility of Aadhaar for over 1.4 million railway employees, he said the unique number can be used for them in areas like pension payments, authenticating employee family members when they visit any healthcare facility or for railway receipts when goods are sent.

UIDAI has recently come out with a draft bill which proposes to make it a statutory body called National Identification Authority of India and provides for punishment for offences like breaching of its database.

According to it, one of the main advantages of the 12-digit unique identity number is that it will help in weeding out duplicates in the various government data. Hence helping projects to be implemented in a proper manner.

Speaking at the symposium titled 'IT can happen in Government', Mr Nilekani underlined the need for roping in the right kind of talent for longer duration to evolve sustainable models.

"In the coming decades, technology-enabled projects in governance will become more and more pervasive. Our focus should, therefore, be how to create a broad set of capabilities in the system and right people are available to strategic projects in a continuous manner.

"This will help us to take the projects to a certain level of sustainability in a very short period of time," he said

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