Centre approves unique identity card project's approach for data collection

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New Delhi, May 18 (ANI): The Central Government has approved the approach adopted by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) for collecting demographic and biometric data in order to issue unique identity cards to citizens.

"There are two sets of information, we collect on an individual resident of India. First is the demographic information like his name, his or her date of birth, sex, age, address, father's, mother's or guardian's name," said Nandan Nilekani, the Chairman of the Unique Identity Authority of India (UIDAI).

"It is very simple information we collect. This is what we call as the demographic information. We also collect biometric information for the purpose of uniqueness, and that is all the ten finger prints, the face and the iris of both the eyes," he added.

Nilekani said the first set of identity cards would be issued between August 2010 and February 2011.

"The first set of Unique Identification numbers will be issued between August 2010 and February 2011. This was actually the commitment made by the Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee in his Budget speech last July," said Nilekani.

"Pranab Mukherjee said that within 12 to 18 months, the first UID numbers would be issued. The proposal was to stick to the date given then," he added.

Around 600 million unique identity cards would be released within a span of four to five years.

Nilekani further said the authorities are drafting a law governing the functioning of the project to ensure that the data collected remains confidential.

The UID cards would be given to every individual above 15 years, including NRIs and foreigners.

The UIDAI has set a target to provide 600 million UIDs in the next five years and the first UID is expected to be given out in early 2011. (ANI)

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