No deadline to link Aadhaar cards with ration cards: Collector

“Ration supplies will not be cut if public have not linked Aadhaar cards”

Following informal communication by ration shop employees to the public that their ration supplies will be cut if Aadhaar cards of all the family members are not linked to ration cards by July 30, hundreds of people have been flocking the e-service centres to get their Aadhaar cards printed.

However, with only less than 25 per cent of the 9.39 lakh cardholders in the district linking their Aadhaar cards so far, the target of the District Supply Office (DSO) to finish the exercise by the end of July looked unattainable.

“Earlier, only the Aadhaar of the family head should be linked. Now, they say Aadhaar numbers of all the family members in the ration card should be linked,” said N. Dhanalakshmi, a resident of Anuppanadi, who had been visiting an e-service centre in the Collectorate for the third consecutive day to get Aadhaar card printed.

The problem was complicated by the insistence of ration shop employees for plastic Aadhaar cards, which can be printed only at select e-service centres, instead of those downloaded and printed from the internet.

“They say that the machine (Point of Sale (PoS) equipment) will not recognize Aadhaar cards printed in internet centres,” said K. Nagamuthu from Mathichiyam.

“However, there is huge delay in e-service centres because of the increasing crowd,” he added.

Speaking on anonymity, a ration shop employee, however, said that even the Aadhaar cards printed from internet centres would be recognised by PoS device, provided they were printed clearly.

“The PoS device operates with a SIM card for internet connection. However, in a few outlets located in remote areas, there is no coverage for the SIM cards, which are from a private company,” he said.

To quell the anxieties of the public, Collector K. Veera Raghava Rao on Monday said that there was no deadline and ration supplies would not be cut for those who had not linked their Aadhaar cards.

“On Monday, he convened a meeting and instructed Joint Registrar of Cooperative Societies, officials of Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies Department and DSO to ensure that rumours were not spread about stopping of supplies,” a senior official from DSO said.