• How to Avail an Aadhaar Card if You Are a Non-Resident Indian

    Aadhaar Card is a document for which even NRIs (Non-Resident Indian) along with the rest of India can apply. The initiative was facilitated by the Planning Commission in order to ensure that each resident of India had a unique identification in addition to ensuring that welfare services are delivered efficiently and effectively. The card comes with a distinctive 12-digit aadhar number that is unique to each individual, and while the card was initially granted only to Indian residents, the Central Government has now made a provision to issue the same to NRIs as well. Any non-resident Indian staying in India for more than 182 days or 12 months can apply for Aadhaar.

    An Aadhaar Card is linked with the centralised database and includes demographic, biometric and other relevant data of an individual, which is instrumental in identifying an individual. The details gathered from NRIs will make UIDAI’s database more rich and accurate since the project is well-received and accepted in India, and the government now wants to make it a success the world over.

    Procedure for NRIs to Avail an Aadhaar Card

    The requirements and procedure to avail an Aadhaar card for an NRI is similar to the process that an Indian resident has to go through. An NRI can apply for the 12-digit Aadhaar UID in two ways: online or offline. The individual will need to visit the official website of Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) or the UIDAI-approved enrolment centres to apply for the Aadhar Card online and offline respectively.

    The non-resident Indian applying for Aadhar card can visit the UIDAI website and find an UIDAI affiliated enrolment centre near to him/her. Once the enrolment centre is selected, the person will have to fix an appointment for the enrolment. Following are the steps which an NRI can observe to avail an Aadhaar card at the Aadhar enrolment centre:

    Step 1. Submission of Documents

    The first step to availing an Aadhaar card is to submit all the relevant documents that establish the identity  of the non-resident Indian. The documents he/she will have to furnish will include birth certificate, photo ID card and school certificate. NRIs will also be requested to produce the connection they have with another country where they hold a Green card. The submitted documents will then be verified by the officials to determine whether or not the individual is eligible for an Aadhaar card.

    Step 2. Finger-Tip Scanning

    After an NRI has submitted his/her documents, he/she will be called for a biometric scanning where all ten of his/her fingers will be scanned to establish the unique identity. The biometric scan is necessary to ensure that identification of the individual is unique and accurate, so the person will have to visit the Aadhaar card enrolment centre to complete the process.

    Step 2. Iris Scanning

    The fingertips will not be the only thing being scanned to establish a person’s perfect identity. The authorities will also scan his/her iris to ensure that the identity will never have the risk of being confused with someone else’s. The iris scanning will also be held in the Aadhaar enrolment centre after the fingertips have been scanned.

    Step 3. Photograph

    Once the scanning procedures are complete, the Aadhaar applicants will have to have their photograph taken by the web-camera at the enrolment centre. The photograph will then be added to the Aadhaar documents and they will receive the physical copy of Aadhaar Card from the UIDAI.

    It takes around three months for the authorities to dispatch the Aadhaar card, but one can track the status of his/her Aadhaar card online by visiting the UIDAI website with the enrolment number (EID) mentioned in the acknowledgement slip.

    The amount of time taken for UIDAI card to dispatch an NRI’s Aadhaar card is the same as the amount of time taken to grant a resident’s Aadhaar card. By following the simple aforementioned steps, one can avail the Aadhaar card with relative ease.   

    The UIDAI also provides facilities for both residents and non-resident Indians to download e-Aadhaar card from its website. The digital copy of Aadhar is equally accepted for all kinds of services.

    Read more about: Procedure to download e-Aadhaar

    Should An NRI Hold An Aadhaar Card?

    As per rules, only those who have resided in India for a period of 182 can apply for an Aadhaar card.

    Aadhaar card cannot be applied online. The NRI applying for the card needs to be present in India to do so.

    NRIS, Aadhar and Income Tax Returns

    It is not mandatory for NRIs to give Aadhaar card details while filing income tax returns for income not earned in India. NRIs have to mandatorily file returns for any income that is earned in India. For example, there are many Indians in foreign countries such as the US, UK or the Gulf, and these NRIs regularly file income tax returns but do not hold an Aadhaar card. This created panic about NRIs when the Indian government made linking of PAN with Aadhaar mandatory for filing income tax returns.

    In fact, Dr Ajay Bhushan Pandey, CEO, Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), has said that exemptions need to be given to NRIs in this aspect. The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) also made an announcement stating that NRIs will be exempted from the PAN-Aadhaar linking rule. The rule of providing Aadhaar data for filing income tax returns or for applying for a PAN, will not apply for NRIs, the CBDT announced in a report.

    Can an NRI hold an Aadhaar card?

    It is further clarified that only those who have resided in India for 182 days are considered Indian residents. This is immediately preceding the application date for government documents such as the Aadhaar. And only a resident individual is allowed to obtain an Aadhaar card.

    Will an NRI’s PAN card be blocked if it is not linked with Aadhaar?

    Only a resident of India is permitted to obtain an Aadhaar card. The rule will not apply to residents of other countries and hence it is not a must for an NRI to link his/her Aadhaar card with PAN.

    In case an NRI hold an Aadhaar card? How can they link it?

    • Visit the e-filing Income Tax portal and login by providing username and password
    • Click on the pop-up window that allows you to link PAN with Aadhaar
    • Provide details such as gender, date of birth, name. These details should match the details submitted at the time of registration
    • Confirm details and initiate the linking process
    • A confirmation message will be sent to the respective user upon linking of the PAN with the Aadhaar card

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    News About Aadhaar Card

    • Make it easier for NRIs to get Aadhaar: Former MP

      A former MP has appealed to the Union Finance Minister urging the government to make it more easy for NRIs to apply and procure their Aadhaar cards.

      He has asked for arrangements to be made across embassies to issue Aadhaar cards and also to make certain changes in the Aadhaar Act to implement this move. He stressed that NRIs cannot come to India just to apply for an Aadhaar as it is not a practical option.

      24 January 2018

    • Indian Government Eyeing to Change the Aadhaar Eligibility for NRIs

      Recently, the Indian government has decided to change the Aadhaar eligibility for the NRIs, considering the vast number of NRIs across the country.

      In the past, Pravasi Bandhu Welfare Trust (PBWT) had sent a plea to the Indian Government to change the Aadhaar eligibility criteria for the non-residential Indian. The minimum residential requirement in India is a burden for NRIs due to which they are not able to apply for the Aadhaar card and link it to their mobile number and all other important documents.

      Although the government is interested, but the Chairman of UAE- based PBWT, KV Shamsudheen has written a letter to Sushma Swaraj mentioning the news has enthralled many of the NRIs, but there has been no progress in this regard from past 2 years. The NRIs faced a lot of trouble in availing a mobile connection or availing other services, during their recent winter vacation session due to the ineligibility of getting an Aadhaar card. Due to this the government has decided to alter Aadhaar card eligibility for NRIs so that they don’t face trouble when they are in India.

      10 January 2018

    • NRIs Exempted From Linking Aadhaar and Mobile Numbers

      The last date to link Aadhaar and SIM is March 31, 2018 as per the Department of Telecommunication. Hence, all the telecom operators are sending notification to their subscribers to complete the linking the soonest possible.

      Amidst this rush, the non-resident Indians (NRIs) can’t apply for an Aadhaar card due to the deficient residential requirement. Due to this many of the NRIs are facing problem using the mobile numbers that they have enrolled for during their stay in India.

      The Indian High commission has instructed all the mobile phone service providers to use an alternative method for re-verifying NRIs, PIOs and OCI card holders.

      10 January 2018

    • Getting Mobile Connections May be Hard for NRIs

      Aadhaar Card has been made mandatory for everything today. Abiding by this the telecom operators are now helping its customer to link their phone number with Aadhaar card. The movement has gained significant progress as of now. Given that the mobile number linking with Aadhaar card is compulsory, for NRIs getting a mobile connection may be difficult.

      In case a NRI stays in the country for more than 180 days, he is permitted to apply for Aadhaar card. However, if the duration is less than that getting an Aadhaar card and mobile connection is not possible at all. And, it is a great matter of worry for all non-resident Indians. Due to this, now NRIs are taking phone connections in their relative’s name.

      24 October 2017

    • UIDAI clarifies if NRIs and OCIs should link their Aadhaar with bank account and PAN

      Now that we already aware that everyone should link Aadhaar number with their bank account by December 32, 2017. But now the question is, if it is also applicable for the NRIs and OCIs? The UIDAI has confirmed that the NRIs and OCIs need not have to link their bank account, SIM, or PAN.

      Most importantly, according to Aadhaar Act, NRIs or OCIs are not eligible to obtain Aadhaar, so they are totally exempt from producing Aadhaar for any verification.

      6 October 2017

    • Aadhaar data and sexuality

      The recent Supreme Court verdict about the right to privacy being a fundamental right is likely to have a huge impact on the lives of people. The verdict was given by a nine-judge constitutional bench and this verdict is likely to have an impact on many things including the sharing and collection of personal data, the move to make Aadhaar a mandatory identification to avail all social welfare schemes and also last but not the least, the criminalization of homosexuality.

      As per the ruling: “ the right to privacy is protected as an intrinsic part of the right to life and personal liberty under Article 21 and as a part of the freedoms guaranteed by Part III of the Constitution.”

      12 September 2017

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