Rs 500, 10 minutes, and you have access to billion Aadhaar details

It was only last November that the UIDAI asserted that “Aadhaar data is fully safe and secure and there has been no data leak or breach at UIDAI.” Today, The Tribune “purchased” a service being offered by anonymous sellers over WhatsApp that provided unrestricted access to details for any of the more than 1 billion Aadhaar numbers created in India thus far.(Follow The Tribune on Facebook; and Twitter @thetribunechd)It took just Rs 500, paid through Paytm, and 10 minutes in which an “agent” of the group running the racket created a “gateway” for this correspondent and gave a login ID and password. Lo and behold, you could enter any Aadhaar number in the portal, and instantly get all particulars that an individual may have submitted to the UIDAI (Unique Identification Authority of India), including name, address, postal code (PIN), photo, phone number and email.What is more, The Tribune team paid another Rs 300, for which the agent provided “software” that could facilitate the printing of the Aadhaar card after entering the Aadhaar number of any individual.When contacted, UIDAI officials in Chandigarh expressed shock over the full data being accessed, and admitted it seemed to be a major national security breach. They immediately took up the matter with the UIDAI technical consultants in Bangaluru.Sanjay Jindal, Additional Director-General, UIDAI Regional Centre, Chandigarh, accepting that this was a lapse, told The Tribune: “Except the Director-General and I, no third person in Punjab should have a login access to our official portal. Anyone else having access is illegal, and is a major national security breach.”

1 lakh illegal users

Investigations by The Tribune reveal that the racket may have started around six months ago, when some anonymous groups were created on WhatsApp. These groups targeted over 3 lakh village-level enterprise (VLE) operators hired by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (ME&IT) under the Common Service Centres Scheme (CSCS) across India, offering them access to UIDAI data.CSCS operators, who were initially entrusted with the task of making Aadhaar cards across India, were rendered idle after the job was withdrawn from them. The service was restricted to post offices and designated banks to avoid any security breach in November last year.Spotting an opportunity to make a quick buck, more than one lakh VLEs are now suspected to have gained this illegal access to UIDAI data to provide “Aadhaar services” to common people for a charge, including the printing of Aadhaar cards. However, in wrong hands, this access could provide an opportunity for gross misuse of the data.The hackers seemed to have gained access to the website of the Government of Rajasthan, as the “software” provided access to “aadhaar.rajasthan.gov.in”, through which one could access and print Aadhaar cards of any Indian citizen. However, it could not be ascertained whether the “portals” were genuinely of Rajasthan, or it was mentioned just to mislead.Sanjay Jindal said all of this could be confirmed only after a technical investigation was conducted by the UIDAI.


‘Privacy at risk’“Leakage of Aadhaar data reveals that the project has failed the privacy test. At the recently concluded 11th WTO Ministerial Conference, India submitted a written position on e-commerce, opposing the demand for negotiations on e-commerce by the US and its allies. The latter were demanding access to citizens’ database for free. The revelation by The Tribune also means that the proposed data protection law will now hold no purpose, as the data has already been breached. The state governments must immediately disassociate themselves and cancel the MoU signed with UIDAI,” said Gopal Krishan, New Delhi-based convener of the Citizens Forum for Civil Liberties, who appeared before the Special Parliamentary Committee that examined the Aadhaar Bill in 2010.A quick chat, and full access

  • 12:30 pm: This correspondent posing as ‘Anamika’ contacted a person on WhatsApp number 7610063464, who introduced himself as ‘Anil Kumar’. He was asked to create an access portal.
  • 12:32pm: Kumar asked for a name, email ID and mobile number, and also asked for Rs 500 to be credited in his Paytm No. 7610063464.
  • 12:35 pm: This correspondent created an email ID, aadharjalandhar@gmail.com, and sent mobile number ******5852 to the anonymous agent.
  • 12:48 pm: Rs 500 transferred through Paytm.
  • 12:49 pm: This correspondent received an email saying, “You have been enrolled as Enrolment Agency Administrator for ‘CSC SPV’. Your Enrolment Agency Administrator ID is ‘Anamika_6677’.” Also, it was said that a password would be sent in a separate mail, which followed shortly.
  • 12:50 pm: This correspondent had access to the Aadhaar details of every Indian citizen registered with the UIDAI.

Printing Aadhaar cardThis correspondent later again approached Anil Kumar to ask for software to print Aadhaar cards. He asked for Rs 300 through Paytm No. 8107888008 (in the name of ‘Raj’). Once paid, a person identifying himself as Sunil Kumar called from mobile number 7976243548, and installed software on this correspondent’s computer by accessing it remotely through “TeamViewer”. Once the job was done, he deleted the software drivers, even from the recycle bin. Possible misuseGetting SIM cards, or bank accounts in anyone’s name. Last month, a man was arrested in Jalandhar for withdrawing money from someone’s bank account by submitting a fake Aadhaar card.

 

Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, January 3

http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/nation/rs-500-10-minutes-and-you-have-access-to-billion-aadhaar-details/523361.html

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Key Aadhaar Linking Deadlines You Should Know

Deadlines postponed indefinitely

https://www.ndtv.com/india-news/deadline-for-linking-aadhaar-to-government-schemes-extended-indefinitely-1787255

http://www.moneylife.in/article/deadline-to-link-aadhaar-with-bank-account-extended-indefinitely/52441.html

The deadline for linking bank accounts with Aadhaar is December 31, 2017

Key Aadhaar Linking Deadlines You Should Know
The last date to link Aadhaar with mobile phone number is February 6, 2018

Government has announced the mandatory linking of Aadhaar to various financial services, the deadlines of which are fast approaching. The Unique Identity Authority of India (UIDAI) has announced different deadlines for linking of Aadhaar with bank accounts, PAN, mobile numbers and others. Missing these deadlines may lead to dissolution of important services. However, a five-judge Constitution bench of the Supreme Court is yet to decide on granting of an interim stay on Aadhaar being made mandatory to be linked with all these utilities.

This is based on a plea by petitioners who challenged the linking of Aadhaar with various essentials, saying it violates the right to privacy.

Here’s the list of various deadlines that you must know in order to avoid termination of any of your essential services:

Aadhaar-Bank Account linking deadline

The deadline for linking bank accounts with Aadhaar is December 31, 2017. The linking can be carried out at the bank’s branch or through net banking.

Aadhaar-PAN linking deadline

The Central Board of Direct Taxes has extended the deadline for linking Permanent Account Number (PAN) with Aadhaar to March 31, 2018. The Aadhaar-PAN linking can be done on the Income Tax website.

Aadhaar-mobile phone number (SIM) linking deadline

The last date to link Aadhaar with mobile phone number is February 6, 2018. The linking can be done at a store or a service centre or by calling the customer services wing of the service provider.

Aadhaar-insurance policy linking deadline

The deadline to link insurance policies with Aadhaar is December 31, 2017. This can be done by logging into the insurance companys’ websites or visiting the customer services departments of the providers.

Aadhaar-Mutual Fund linking deadline

The last day to link your Aadhaar card with mutual fund investments is December 31, 2017. The linking can be done by taking help of the registrar and transfer agents.

Aadhaar-Social Security Schemes linking deadline

The last day to link Aadhaar to social security services is December 31, 2017. These services include availing of LPG cylinders and educational scholarships, among other things.

Aadhaar-PPF linking deadline

Updating Aadhaar details by December 31, 2017 is mandatory for subscribers of Public Provident Fund.

https://www.ndtv.com/business/linking-aadhaar-important-deadlines-that-you-should-not-miss-1786918

https://www.ndtv.com/business/aadhaar-linking-aadhaar-linking-deadlines-last-date-what-to-do-other-details-1785339

 

Aadhaar has made me an orphan of our democracy

Hello. My name is Rajesh Mehar. I am a law-abiding citizen of India. Wait. Actually, I am not so sure anymore.
Until 1 April of 2017, I was a good citizen. You could even have called me an Adarsh Citizen. I paid my taxes on time, did not participate in cash transactions if other alternatives were available, did not hoard cash or have undisclosed income, did not use unregistered mobile phone SIM cards, did not claim subsidies surreptitiously, and definitely did not resort to legal action against my own country.
But since 1 April 2017, it has all been coming apart. I have not been able to file my Income Tax returns despite wanting and trying to. My bank accounts are most likely to become non-operational at the end of this month and I will be forced to transact only in cash. I will not be able to receive a salary, declare my income, or participate in the economy legally. My mobile phone connection will be blocked in February 2018, and I may need to borrow a SIM card and impersonate someone else. I still do not plan to claim any subsidies, but I most definitely plan legal action against my government.
All of this has happened only because of one powerful force in my life. No, not my faadhaar, not my maadhaar, but Aadhaar. My name is Rajesh Mehar. I do not have Aadhaar and I am an orphan of our democracy.
But why? What am I hiding?
Several friends have laughed at my stubbornness. Why don’t you want to get Aadhaar? What are you hiding? Don’t you know Aadhaar is stopping many illegal practices? If you can give your fingerprints to the US Consulate for a visa, why can’t you give your biometrics to our government? Do you hate our Prime Minister?
I have been thinking about these questions without scepticism and formulating my honest answers. It makes sense to start in reverse order.
No, I do not hate our Prime Minister. I disagree with him on many counts, and I think he has made some grievous mistakes along the way, but I like him as much as I like any other political leader from any other party. And that is NOT why I have not got my Aadhaar.
Yes, I have obtained a visa and travelled to other countries and I have submitted my fingerprints in the process. However, I did so feeling powerless, criminalised, and disenfranchised every moment of that process. I did so knowing that I would go back to the welcoming, safe bosom of my country at the end of the ordeal. Now to feel the same way about the land I was born in makes me sad beyond description. I feel like a crying child, beaten and abused outside, coming back home to discover that my parents had gone mad and I was to be beaten and abused at home too.
No, Aadhaar has not stopped criminal activities and illegal practices, or even reduced them. In fact, criminals are using Aadhaar, and common citizens’ lack of understanding about it, to perpetrate crimes and continue illegal practices. The government themselves have leaked citizens’ private information, even the President’s office has. Sometimes, private information has been leaked through obscure websites that nobody knows about, like Zambo dot in. Using Aadhaar, common citizens’ money has been redirected without their knowledge, or cheated out of them again and again and again and again. In fact, criminals have even managed to make fake Aadhaars and the initial promise of weeding out fake claimants of government subsidies and entitlements is also now broken.
Are there safeguards?
But my friends are not idiots. “Arre, but it will never happen to you yaar. The government has made sure that there are safeguards. Even if anything goes wrong, you will be able to get redressal,” they say. Well, no.
Aadhaar was created by a team of technologists who have since left Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), the parent organisation, to create other companies that will profit from the Aadhaar ecosystem. This is a troubling conflict of interest, and at least one person connected to ‘monetising Aadhaar’ has been publicly outed as an online troll, creating multiple accounts to badger and discredit critics of Aadhaar. Some people who created the Aadhaar technology are acknowledged to be volunteers! Would I have my broken tap fixed by a volunteer plumber? Would I give my cellphone to have its shattered touch screen repaired by a volunteer technician? Then how can we accept that a mission critical national identity project was developed by volunteer technologists?
If by chance, your or my Aadhaar number is made public, it can never be changed. And unfortunately, you and I are stuck with the same fingers and irises for the rest of our lives. Despite this irrevocable loss in case of a breach, there is no easy complaint system for Aadhaar-related fraud. You can call the Aadhaar customer service call centre, which, by the way, people are having trouble finding. Or it can be reached sometimes but the ‘system doesn’t work’. And of course, no court can allow any legal action connected with Aadhaar except if the legal action is initiated by UIDAI itself.
So, if you or I have an Aadhaar related problem, what is the best way out? Many citizens have taken to using Twitter, a public social media platform owned by an American company, to get through to UIDAI. Moreover, UIDAI themselves encourage us to reveal our Aadhaar number by ‘Private Message’ to air our grievance via this website, which is legally bound to divulge information on the platform to American security agencies. Excellent.
Why is it compulsory?
Nobody knows why Aadhaar is mandatory. Or even if it is mandatory. You can choose not to have an Aadhaar as long as you do not need a bank account, a mobile phone connectionincome tax returnsschool admissionsmedical care, and a host of other optional items. Our Prime Minister himself had opposed Aadhaar vehemently. UIDAI itself petitioned the Supreme Court that Aadhaar should not be made mandatory. So, why is it mandatory? Nobody knows.
Orphaned by Democracy
Indian citizens are constitutionally blessed with three parents for support, one more than the average child gets allocated. These three parents are the legislature, the executive, and the judiciary. Citizenry have tried to tell these three parents that they are being abused. Unfortunately, these parents have orphaned us. The first parent, our legislature, passed the Aadhaar related legislation as a money bill, which means it did not get debated in the Rajya Sabha at all. The second parent, our executive, has been indirectly making Aadhaar mandatory by making it compulsory to link it to several other services. There is no option for those who do not have Aadhaar or those who do not want to link it. Our last resort, our judiciary, has been patiently wearing down our complaints by not substantially hearing the several Aadhaar related matters before it for the last two and a half years.
So, bereft of any parental support, here I stand.
Thank you for listening to my story. I am Rajesh Mehar, a law abiding citizen of India until the next Aadhaar linking deadline. I am now an orphan of our democracy. Will civil society adopt me?
(Rajesh Mehar is a father of two beautiful children and also works for an IT company. He does not have Aadhaar yet.)

Supreme Court asks banks, telecom companies not to create panic among customers on Aadhaar linking

The Supreme Court sought the government’s response on four petitions challenging the constitutional validity of the Aadhaar Act and linking of bank accounts and mobile numbers with the 12-digit biometric identification number.
A bench comprising Justices A K Sikri and Ashok Bhushan, however, said that banks and mobile service providers must mention the deadlines – December 31 and February 6 – in SMSess sent to customers on linking their accounts to the Aadhaar numbers.
The apex court, however, pulled up banks and mobile telephone companies for creating panic by sending customers messages saying their accounts will be deactivated if they don’t link them to Aadhaar.
“I don’t want to say (so) but I also get messages,” said Justice Sikri, referring to the sometimes umpteen-a-day text messages threatening deactivation for not linking one’s Aadhaar to one’s bank account and mobile phone number.
The top court asked these institutions to avoid scaring people in this manner, while it was hearing a plea from social activists to restrain the Centre from linking Aadhaar to bank accounts and mobile phone numbers until a Constitution bench decides its validity.

Bank Aadhaar linking: RBI never issued any order, reveals RTI

Even as banks are on an overdrive to push customers to link their Aadhaar numbers to bank accounts on the threat of suspending accounts, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has told us that it has never issued any such directions. This was in response to a Right to Information (RTI) Act application filed by me. The RBI’s emphatic RTI response makes it clear that the decision is entirely that of the central government.
The RBI’s response says, “The Government has issued a Gazette Notification GSR 538(E) dated 1 June 2017 regarding Prevention of Money laundering (Maintenance of Records) Second Amendment Rules, 2017, inter-alia, making furnishing of Aadhaar (for those individuals who are eligible to be enrolled for Aadhaar) and permanent number (PAN) mandatory for opening a bank account. It may be noted that Reserve Bank has not yet issued instruction in this regard”.
Responding to a specific query on providing copy of the file along with file notings regarding mandatory linking of Aadhaar number with bank accounts, the Reserve Bank stated it “has not issued any instruction so far regarding mandatory liking of Aadhaar number with bank accounts.”
When explicitly asked if RBI had taken permission from the Supreme Court for mandatory linking of bank accounts with Aadhaar number, especially when the apex court had restricted its usage for six schemes, the Reserve Bank stated that is has not filed any petition before the SC.”
Replies from RBI clearly show that it is the Narendra Modi-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government, which is frightening and coercing people into linking bank accounts with Aadhaar, under the pretext of preventing money laundering. This reasoning is quite bizarre because it seems to treat every bank customer as money launderer and criminal involved in money laundering, unless they link their Aadhaar number with bank account.
Experts have questioned the legal validity of this action and even moved the Supreme Court alleging contempt of its orders. The SC has restricted usage of Aadhaar to six schemes, where the government is providing some benefits or subsidy to individuals.
The Gazette Notification (GSR 538(E)) is also in contravention with the orders passed by five-judge Bench of the Supreme Court as well as Aadhaar Act 2016. In its order on 15 October 2015, the apex court had said:
“After hearing the learned Attorney General for India and other learned senior counsels, we are of the view that in paragraph 3 of the Order dated 11 August 2015, if we add, apart from the other two Schemes, namely, PDS Scheme and the LPG Distribution Scheme, the Schemes like the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS), National Social Assistance Programme (Old Age Pensions, Widow Pensions, Disability Pensions) Prime Minister’s Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) and Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) for the present, it would not dilute earlier order passed by this Court. Therefore, we now include the aforesaid Schemes apart from the other two Schemes that this Court has permitted in its earlier order dated 11 August 2015. We impress upon the Union of India that it shall strictly follow all the earlier orders passed by this Court commencing from 23 September 2013. We will also make it clear that the Aadhaar card Scheme is purely voluntary and it cannot be made mandatory till the matter is finally decided by this Court one way or the other.”
Earlier, the RBI itself had raised serious concerns on Aadhaar in terms of terror financing and money laundering before reluctantly agreeing to the use of the UID in 2011.
The Gazette Notification issued by Department of Revenue under the Ministry of Finance, for mandatory linking of bank accounts and Aadhaar number is in contravention of the Aadhaar Act. Especially, Section 7 of the Aadhaar Act states furnishing of Aadhaar to establish identity for receipt of subsidy, benefit or service for which expenditure is incurred from Consolidated Fund of India.
An individual bank customer, in most cases, uses own money to open or operate the account and not from the Consolidated Fund of India. Also there are a large number of taxpayers, who are not even eligible to receive any subsidy or benefits from any Central Ministry or State Government. Yet, they too are forced to link their self-financed bank account with Aadhaar number.
One circular (No 23111/Gen/2017/Legal-UIDAI dated 15 September 2016) issued by Ajay Bhushan Pandey, Chief Executive of UIDAI about Section 7 says the Central Ministries or State Governments, who wants to use Aadhaar should issue a notification stating the service, benefits or subsidies from the Consolidated Fund of India, which require the beneficiary’s Aadhaar authentication or furnishing proof of Aadhaar. (See image below).
Linking a bank account with an Aadhaar number has no advantage either to the bank or the customer. This is because the customer’s PAN number, which has been issued by the Income Tax Department, is already linked to majority bank accounts. The PAN number actually provides much more information than the Aadhaar number and is linked with all financial instruments of the banks’ customers.
In addition, banks are mandated to strictly follow know-your-customer (KYC) procedure for all its customers. For KYC, the RBI considers passport, driving licence, PAN card, Voter’s ID card issued by the Election Commission of India, job card issued by NREGA duly signed by an officer of the State Government, and letter issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) containing details of name, address and Aadhaar number as six officially valid documents (OVDs). Explaining the OVDs, RBI says, customers, at their option, can submit one of the six OVDs for proof of identity and proof of address.
What is more serious in this mandatory linkage business is the Government thinking and treatment to every bank customer as money launderer without Aadhaar. That too when the Government machinery has several tools at their disposable to identify any bank account that is used for money laundering purpose.
One such tool used by the Income Tax Department is procuring statement of financial transaction or reportable account (FTRA), previously called as Annual Information Return (AIR). Under FTRA, banks had to furnish information on cash deposits or cash withdrawals (including through bearer’s cheque) aggregating to Rs50,000 or more in a financial year, in or from one or more current account of a person. Additionally, post offices, NBFCs, companies, mutual funds, registrars or sub-registrars, Regional Transport Officers (RTOs), District Collectors and stock exchanges also have to submit high value transactions to the I-T Department.
If the government has all tools and capability to identity money laundering taking place in bank accounts, why then it is forcing each and every account holder to link Aadhaar, which is illegal as it contravenes the Supreme Court orders.
One Dr Kalyani Menon Sen had already filed a petition in the Supreme Court against mandatory linking of Aadhaar with bank accounts and mobile numbers, says a report from The Hindu.
The petition challenges Rule 2(b) of the Prevention of Money-laundering (Maintenance of Records) Second Amendment Rules, 2017 for mandatory submission of Aadhaar number for individual clients, companies, partnership firms and trusts for opening of bank accounts, maintaining existing bank accounts, making financial transactions of and above Rs50,000 and crediting foreign remittance into ‘small accounts’.
The petition says the Government’s move to link bank accounts and mobile numbers with Aadhaar number violates fundamental Right to Privacy and equates citizens, including the elderly, women and students, with money launders.
The apex court is scheduled to hear several linked cases on Aadhaar in November. Hope it considers this forceful linking of bank account with Aadhaar number as well.

Linking Aadhaar to mobile and bank accounts is illegal

 Here is what you can do if you are forced

 
Mobile linkage
Various telecom companies are citing TRAI and DOT notifications to force you to link Aadhaar to your mobile else face disconnection. While it is not amusing that the government believes that a SIM issued in someone’s name is used by the same person and terrorists and criminals do KYCwith their own documents or Aadhaar, here are just three ways that requiring an Aadhaar to obtain a SIM endangers India:
1. It enables terrorists, criminals and anti-national forces to obtain multiple SIMs through eKYC, claims of eKYC, or submitting Aadhaar cards of other persons and use them in turn to open bank accounts for money laundering and financing anti-national activities.
2. It facilitates obtaining all documents like passport, and drivers licenses by using the new SIM and the Aadhaar. It, therefore, destroys our ability to distinguish a citizen from an illegal immigrant. It is therefore like the disease AIDS for the country.
3. The SIM treated as a proof of identity of the user allows infiltration of the country, even its defence services, with terrorists and anti-nationals causing a national security threat.
Here are just three ways that requiring an Aadhaar to obtain a SIM endangers you:
1. Because Aadhaar and one time passcode (OTP) are treated as “second factor authentication”, SIMs issued with your Aadhaar will be the single point for fraudsters to hack your identity, commit crime and rob you of your property, dignity, liberty, equality and access to justice.
2. Bank accounts opened using your Aadhaar and SIM, as well as property transactions, registration of contracts will no longer be in your control or with your knowledge and traceability. Because the use of “your” SIM in these instances will leave little deniability, if you are accused of these acts, it will destroy your right to justice.
3. The SIMs issued using your Aadhaar allow anyone in possession of such SIMs to impersonate you in both your private and public life. Not only will you have no way to know of such misuse, but you even have no ability to prove and control the misuse.
Bank linkage
Most banks have gone on an overdrive of threatening to freeze existing bank accounts unless customers to link Aadhaar. They are also refusing to open new bank accounts without Aadhaar, citing GSR 538(E), the amendment to the Prevention of Money-laundering (Maintenance of Records) Rules, 2005 under the Prevention of Money-laundering Act, 2002 (15 of 2003)(PMLA), on June 1st 2017.
It is not amusing either that the government believes that Aadhaar identifies anyone at all, provides proof of the persons authorisation or consent to opening bank accounts or even to do bank transactions. Here are just three ways that linking an Aadhaar number to a bank account or carrying out bank transactions destroys India’s financial systems:
1. When pressured to link Aadhaar to bank accounts, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had maintained that the use of the Aadhaar number was in conflict with the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), the Basel Standards for maintaining customer information and its own extant guidelines. The RBI also highlighted that at best the Aadhaar is a third party identification and such third party identification is not used in banking practices anywhere in the world. It had also highlighted that the use of eKYC destroys customer acquisition information and customer records. As such, Aadhaar enables millions of shell bank accounts to be opened.
2. Bank accounts opened with Aadhaar can be created and operated remotely and therefore create a framework for money laundering at a scale that is impossible with pre-Aadhaar KYC. In five years post Aadhaar KYC, bank accounts in India have doubled from 44 crore to 88 crore and deposits have also doubled from Rs66 lakh crore to Rs122 lakh crore suggesting shell accounts with black money being parked in them.
3. Aadhaar-enabled Payment Systems (AEPS) transfer money from Aadhaar to Aadhaar number and not bank accounts. Such money transfers do not leave money trail and therefore facilitate money laundering in ways that was not possible with National Electronics Funds Transfer System (NEFT) or Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS).
Here are just three ways that linking Aadhaar to your bank accounts endangers you:
1. Your bank account becomes Aadhaar enabled allowing AEPS to transfer money into or from your account as soon as you link it to Aadhaar. This means all money transfers through the AEPS to or from your bank account will be un-traceable and therefore, also irreversible.
2. Money transfers to your account can now be hijacked by a “phishing” account that links itself to your Aadhaar number to receive money meant for you. Such money transfers may become impossible to track and reverse, as they do not leave any money trail.
3. Crime committed using duplicate accounts opened with your Aadhaar number will point to you, not the fraudster. This will also leave you defenseless and deprive you of recourse to justice.
What can you do?
Neither the Aadhaar linkage to mobiles nor the linkage to bank accounts is legal. In fact, it even violates the orders of the Supreme Court and is counter to the Rule of Law. The coercion to link Aadhaar to mobile phones started because of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) and the Department of Telecom (DoT) colluded to ignore the Court’s orders, the rule of law, and existing legislation to produce notifications that mislead, misquote and cause coercion.
The coercion to link bank accounts started because the Department of Revenue, under the Ministry of Finance issued an illegal notification ignoring the law, Court orders and the rule of law.

Government notifications forcing you to link Aadhaar to mobiles, bank accounts and other services are illegal, contempt of the orders of the Supreme Court and a disrespect of the rule of law. You can send letters to the authorities that you too can reuse and demand they respect orders of the Supreme Court of India, the Rule of Law and protect national interests as well as yourself.

Here are Open Letters to TRAI Chairman and Secretary Revenue to end illegal Aadhaar Coercion. The first to the Chairman of TRAI and the second to the Secretary, Dept of Revenue, asking them to end the illegalities, restore respect of the Supreme Court and respect the Rule of Law. You too can endorse them and spread them by mailing/emailing them, or sharing them on social media till the respective government offices respect the orders of the Supreme Court. Together, let us restore the Rule of Law, the protection of our national security, financial integrity and respect for national interests.
(Dr Anupam Saraph is a renowned expert in governance of complex systems and advises governments and businesses across the world. He can be reached @anupamsaraph)
***********************************************************************************
October 2nd 2017 
Chairman,
Telecom Regulatory Authority of India 
Mahanagar Doorsanchar Bhawan (next to Zakir Hussain College) 
Jawaharlal Nehru Marg (Old Minto Road) 
New Delhi: 110 002
cp@trai.gov.in @rssharma3 @trai 
Dear Mr RS Sharma,
Subject: Contempt of Rule of Law and the orders of the Supreme Court of India
Mr. Sanjeev Banzal, Advisor(NSL) recommended, vide No 102-2/2015-NSL-II dated January 20th 2017, to the Secretary, Department of Telecommunications to use Aadhaar based eKYC to re-verify existing mobile subscribers. 
Mr. Prashant Verma, ADG (AS-II) of Ministry of Communications, Department of Telecommunications (Access Services Cell) has been instructing all unified licensees, unified access service licensees and cellular mobile service licensees vide File No. 800-26/2016-AS.IIdated 23.03.2017 to re-verify all existing mobile subscribers through Aadhaar based eKYC process. Mr. Verma uses the documentation by the order of two member bench of the Supreme Court in WP(C) 607/2016 dated 06.02.2017 of the position brought to its notice as a direction of the court. He also asks the licensees to destroy old customer acquisition forms after an Aadhaar “verification”.
Mr Sanjay Kapur had filed an IA on behalf of the TRAI (IA 22, 23 of 2015) on Oct 3rd 2015 with the prayer to modify its order of 11.08.2015 in WP 494 of 2012 to permit biometric eKYC for paperless activation of telephone connections/SIM cards as an alternative process to the existing process of verification of telecom subscribers, till the disposal of the present writ petition. Kindly note the following:
1. A five member bench headed by the then Chief Justice of India in its order dated Oct 15th 2015, turned down your prayer to allow linkage of Aadhaar numbers with SIM activation. The court reiterated all its previous orders. In particular we draw your attention that the court  stated that:
1. “After hearing the learned Attorney General for India and other learned senior counsels, we are of the view that in paragraph 3 of the Order dated 11.08.2015, if we add, apart from the other two Schemes, namely, P.D.S. Scheme and the L.P.G. Distribution Scheme, the Schemes like The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employement Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS), National Social Assistance Programme (Old Age Pensions, Widow Pensions, Disability Pensions) Prime Minister’s Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) and Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) for the present, it would not dilute earlier order passed by this Court. Therefore, we now include the aforesaid Schemes apart from the other two Schemes that this Court has permitted in its earlier order dated 11.08.2015” 
2. “We impress upon the Union of India that it shall strictly follow all the earlier orders passed by this Court commencing from 23.09.2013
3. “We will also make it clear that the Aadhaar card Scheme is purely voluntary and it cannot be made mandatory till the matter is finally decided by this Court one way or the other”
2. The three member bench of the Court had noted earlier in its order of August 11, 2015 that: “The learned Attorney General had stated that the respondent Union of India would ensure that Aadhaar cards would only be issued on a consensual basis after informing the public at large about the fact that the preparation of Aadhaar card involving the parting of biometric information of the individual, which shall however not be used for any purpose other than a social benefit schemes.”. It had therefore ordered that 
1. “The Unique Identification Number or the Aadhaar card will not be used by the respondents for any purpose other than the PDS Scheme and in particular for the purpose of distribution of foodgrains, etc. and cooking fuel, such as kerosene. The Aadhaar card may also be used for the purpose of the LPG Distribution Scheme;
2. “The information about an individual obtained by the Unique Identification Authority of India while issuing an Aadhaar card shall not be used for any other purpose, save as above, except as may be directed by a Court for the purpose of criminal investigation. 
3. In its first order of September 23, 2013, the apex court had highlighted that “In the meanwhile, no person should suffer for not getting the Aadhaar card inspite of the fact that some authority had issued a circular making it mandatory”.
4. Furthermore, the use of Aadhaar for linking to other databases, retention, storage or publishing is not only prohibited but also a punishable offence under the The Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act 2016
It is evident that all communications of the TRAI/DOT to require linkage of Aadhaar are invalid and bad in law. Moreover, they are also in contempt of the Supreme Court and are showing complete disrespect for the Rule of Law. 
In light of these facts, and to ensure that you do not continue to commit contempt of the Supreme Court of India, disregard the Rule of Law and get embroiled in needless controversy and criminality that results from the use and linkage of Aadhaar with the issue and use of SIM and telephones, we require that you kindly issue an immediate and urgent notification and advertise widely highlighting these facts and that mobile and telephone companies can not and do not require or use Aadhaar numbers or Aadhaar information for any process.
Sincerely yours,
CC 
1. TRAI members and Advisors

memberak@trai.gov.in
mamidala@ee.iitd.ac.in
secretary@trai.gov.in
pradvbcs@trai.gov.in
sunil.bajpai@trai.gov.in
pradvnsl@trai.gov.in
skmishra@trai.gov.in
advcait@trai.gov.in
advadmn@trai.gov.in
advlegal@trai.gov.in
mkasim@trai.gov.in
advqos@trai.gov.in
advifn@trai.gov.in
advmn@trai.gov.in
advfea1@trai.gov.in
sanjeet.singh@trai.gov.in
arvindsinha59@gmail.com
adv.bengaluru@trai.gov.in
adv.jaipur@trai.gov.in
adv.kolkata@trai.gov.in
muralighanta@gmail.com

2. Chief Justice of India, ℅ Chief Justice’s Conference Secretariat, Supreme Court of India, Tilak Marg, New Delhi-110 201 Email: supremecourt@nic.in

***********************************************************************************
October 2nd 2017
Secretary,
Ministry of Finance,
128-A/North Block, 
New Delhi
Dear Dr Hasmukh Adhia,
Subject: Contempt of Rule of Law and the orders of the Supreme Court of India
Mandeep Kaur, Dy. Secretary of your department notified GSR 538(E), citing powers conferred by sub-section (1) read with clause (h), clause (i), clause (j) and clause (k) of sub-section (2) of section 73 of the Prevention of Money-laundering Act, 2002 (15 of 2003), on June 1st 2017.
We draw your attention to the following:
1. A five member bench headed by the then Chief Justice of India in its order dated Oct 15th 2015, had reiterated all its previous orders. In particular we draw your attention that the court  stated that:
1. “After hearing the learned Attorney General for India and other learned senior counsels, we are of the view that in paragraph 3 of the Order dated 11.08.2015, if we add, apart from the other two Schemes, namely, P.D.S. Scheme and the L.P.G. Distribution Scheme, the Schemes like The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS), National Social Assistance Programme (Old Age Pensions, Widow Pensions, Disability Pensions) Prime Minister’s Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) and Employees’ Providend Fund Organisation (EPFO) for the present, it would not dilute earlier order passed by this Court. Therefore, we now include the aforesaid Schemes apart from the other two Schemes that this Court has permitted in its earlier order dated 11.08.2015” 
2. “We impress upon the Union of India that it shall strictly follow all the earlier orders passed by this Court commencing from 23.09.2013”
3. “We will also make it clear that the Aadhaar card Scheme is purely voluntary and it cannot be made mandatory till the matter is finally decided by this Court one way or the other”
5. The three member bench of the court had noted earlier in its order of August 11, 2015 that: “The learned Attorney General had stated that the respondent Union of India would ensure that Aadhaar cards would only be issued on a consensual basis after informing the public at large about the fact that the preparation of Aadhaar card involving the parting of biometric information of the individual, which shall however not be used for any purpose other than a social benefit schemes.”. It had therefore ordered that 
1. “The Unique Identification Number or the Aadhaar card will not be used by the respondents for any purpose other than the PDS Scheme and in particular for the purpose of distribution of foodgrains, etc. and cooking fuel, such as kerosene. The Aadhaar card may also be used for the purpose of the LPG Distribution Scheme;”
2. “The information about an individual obtained by the Unique Identification Authority of India while issuing an Aadhaar card shall not be used for any other purpose, save as above, except as may be directed by a Court for the purpose of criminal investigation. 
6. In its first order of September 23, 2013  court had highlighted that “In the meanwhile, no person should suffer for  not  getting the Aadhaar card inspite of the fact that some authority had  issued a circular making it mandatory”.
7. Under section 74 of the Prevention of Money-laundering Act, 2002 (15 of 2003) every rule made under this Act shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House of Parliament, while it is in session, for a total period of thirty days which may be comprised in one session or in two or more successive sessions, and if, before the expiry of the session immediately following the session or the successive sessions aforesaid, both Houses agree in making any modification in the rule or both Houses agree that the rule should not be made, the rule shall thereafter have effect only in such modified form or be of no effect, as the case may be; so, however, that any such modification or annulment shall be without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under that rule.The rules have not been laid before the Parliament as required by parliamentary procedure
8. Furthermore while clause (h) of the Prevention of Money-laundering Act, 2002 (15 of 2003)was omitted by s. 29 with effect from 15.2.2013 and clause (i), clause (j) and clause (k) of sub-section (2) of section 73 does not allow for freezing of any  asset or making it inoperable.
9. Furthermore, the use of Aadhaar for linking to other databases, retention, storage or publishing is not only prohibited but also a punishable offence under the The Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act 2016
It is evident that the GSR 538(E) to require linkage of Aadhaar is invalid and bad in law. More over it is in contempt of the Supreme Court and a disrespect for the Rule of Law. The tactic to coerce people under an invalid legislation that is in contempt of court is undemocratic and deplorable at the very least.
In light of these facts, and to ensure that you do not continue to commit contempt of the Supreme Court of India, disregard the Rule of Law and get embroiled in needless controversy, money-laundering, and criminality that results from the use and linkage of Aadhaar with the opening of bank accounts and undertaking financial transactions, we require that you kindly issue an immediate and urgent notification and advertise widely highlighting these facts and that banks can not and do not require or use Aadhaar numbers or Aadhaar information for any process including KYC and payment transactions.
Sincerely yours,
CC 
1. Dr Urjit R Patel, Governor, Reserve Bank of India, 16th floor, Central Office Building, Shahid Bhagat Singh Marg, Mumbai – 400 001 urjitrpatel@rbi.org.ingovernor@rbi.org.in for similar action to notify banks to purge all Aadhaar usage
2. Chief Justice of India, ℅ Chief Justice’s Conference Secretariat, Supreme Court of India, Tilak Marg, New Delhi-110 201 Email: supremecourt@nic.in

Lock your Aadhaar number to prevent misuse

It is now possible to digitally lock one’s Aadhaar number to prevent its possible misuse by a third party. UIDAI has provided a mechanism for the purpose. It is first necessary to link a designated mobile number for each Aadhaar number to avail of this service.

The following is the procedure to lock/unlock the Aadhaar number:

1. Visit https://resident. uidai.gov.in/biometric-lock

2. Enter your Aadhaar number.

3. Enter the system-generated security code/captcha

4. Receive the OTP in the Aadhaar-registered mobile number.

5. Lock your Aadhaar with a unique password.

Once the number is locked, its use gets restricted and no one else will be able to authenticate it on any biometric device without unlocking it. UIDAI has advised everyone to avail of the service from a security point of view as Aadhaar is linked to bank accounts PAN cards and is fast becoming mandatory for various other purposes.
You can also do this by using the mAadhaar app on your cellphone and enable / disable biometrics with ease. Click Here for details on the mAadhaar app