Maharashtra government to double registration kits for 100% Aadhaar coverage

To take Aadhaar enrolment to 100% and cover the almost 1.40 crore population, which has not yet been tapped for the national unique identity number programme, the state government is planning to double the number of registration kits in Maharashtra.

The state has attained 87.74% Aadhaar enrollment as on August-end and has generated over 9.85 crore Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) numbers, though a total of 1.38 crore people are yet to be covered.

Though districts of Mumbai (90.19%), Ahmednagar (90.75%), Wardha (97.82%), Satara (91.10%) and Sindhudurg (90.70%) have seen registration of over 90% of people, some, such as Nanded (80%), Solapur (81.09%), Yavatmal (83.15%), Hingoli (84.90%) and Latur (84.44%) have performed below expectations.

Maharashtra has a population of 11.23 crore, according to the 2011 census.

“We will focus on children in the zero to six years age group in anganwadis and schools in which we are lagging behind, and where there is a gap,” M Sankaranarayanan, director (Information Technology), government of Maharashtra, told dna. He added that in contrast the coverage of people in the 18 years and above category was almost 97%.

The state will now follow a strategy of dispersing these machines and taking UIDAI enrolment services to the doorsteps of people by placing the kits in gram panchayats for easy accessibility.

Maharashtra already has 2,000 functional kits, which have been procured by the state government and placed on the ground in citizen service centres (CSCs) that are identified by the Maha e-Seva Kendra brand name. Around six villages are covered by one such CSC, which offer government to citizen and commercial services.

The village-level entrepreneurs (VLEs), who have been trained to operate these machines at the CSCs, also organise camps in villages to get over the logistical difficulties of bringing children to the permanent registration centres for enrolment.

“We found that these 2,000 machines will fall short if we have to complete our target by December 31,” said Sankaranarayanan, adding that the Aadhaar enrolment has increased by just around 7% from January to August-end, ie from 80.28% to 87.74%. “If we continue at this rate, then this target cannot be achieved,” he noted, adding that that’s why the state had decided to augment the numbers by adding 1,929 machines. This will take the total number of machines to 3,929.

The district collectors will decide the placement of these machines based on the census population and gaps in registration, and apart from CSCs and VLEs, these machines will also be deployed in the SANGRAM centres in gram panchayats to enable villagers to register. These machines will be deployed in both static mode (in the permanent enrolment centres) and mobile mode.

The UIDAI will also use tablets to enrol children up to the age of six years as their biometrics are not collected.