Aadhaar-linked digital signature facility launched

Bengaluru: All Aadhaar holders can now sign documents remotely as a legal documentation startup has launched an electronic signing feature, taking digital signatures outside the domain of only companies.

LegalDesk.com, a startup in the online legal documentation business, on Thursday announced the launch of eSignDesk, which is built on the Aadhaar platform. eSign is an initiative of the Indian government aimed at allowing all citizens with Aadhaar to remotely sign any document. “This will do away with the need for physical presence to sign. It allows you to get legal work done online,” said Krupesh Bhat, founder of LegalDesk.com.

The e-signing feature, he said, saves both time and money, while providing security as nobody can forge this signature. It also ensures that the content of the document cannot be tampered with.

Nandan Nilekani, who spearheaded the Aadhaar project, said: “This is part of a vision we’ve all been dreaming of for the last seven years. We’ve all thought how we can use technology at a scale large enough to impact people, and this is one part of it using Aadhaar, which I am pleased is in the market now.”

He said the government should focus on creating digital infrastructure that will allow more firms like LegalDesk.com to innovate and provide services to people. “GPS was created by the US government, so was the internet, but today you see how many players use it to give us services. It is such development of infrastructure that only a government can provide, which I want India to create.”

Appreciating the government’s efforts, Nilekani said: “In the next few months you will have smartphones with biometric systems that will allow you to instantly verify your Aadhaar data. It will allow people to complete the KYC (know your customer) process mandated by banks and other institutions, helping people tremendously.”

Besides, he said, the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), an organization run by all the banks in the country, is coming out with its own version of UPI (unified payment interface) that will make receiving and sending money as simple as sending an email.

“People will take time to accept all these reforms. But they are the future and we will all eventually begin using it,” he said.