Companies To Face Penalty Of Rs 1 Crore & Jail Term For Forcing To Provide Aadhaar Details
Amendments cleared by the Union Cabinet have proposed penalties for telecom companies and banks who will insist that the sole identity and address proof is Aadhaar and will not allow consumers to use their ration card or passport to open an account or get a mobile connection. The accused may have to pay up to Rs 1 crore and the staffers concerned may be jailed from three years to 10 years. Aadhaar holders will also be given the option to complete KYC formalities using the unique ID.
“A platform that promotes good governance”
According to Government sources, the Indian Telegraph Act and Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 had been amended keeping in mind that the Supreme Court had ordered that only for welfare services that involve public funds can Aadhaar be compulsory.
It is required that entities perform authentication so that the amendments comply with standards of privacy in keeping with the law the parliament will pass. The Centre has prescribed that in the case of “state interest” only can an exception be made, reported The Times Of India.
“Aadhaar is a platform that promotes good governance. The amendments protect security and privacy. They set out rules for consent in case of minor and opt-out option at the age of 18. There are strict punishments for any attempt to tamper with core biometrics,” said a source.
The electronic authentication process
The electronic authentication process cannot be used to access the Aadhaar biometric base by agencies as it is very secure, but anybody attempting to misuse the data may have to pay a fine of Rs 50 lakh and, will invite a jail term extending up to 10 years.
By this move, the government intends to allow private firms to carry out Aadhaar-based authentication using the UIDAI servers. This will be allowed in the light of their pleas which claimed that their business is affected by the SC ruling.
Many red lines have been set by the government keeping in mind how customers are pestered by telecom firms for linking Aadhaar and cases where ID details were sought by the firms for commercial use.
In case someone fails to obtain consent for collecting information for authentication, they may have to pay a fine of Rs 10,000 and serve a prison term of three years. Offline verification through QR codes will also have the penalty applied to it. A fine of Rs 10 lakh to Rs one lakh may be applied in cases of unauthorized publication of photographs of ID.