Going postal over verification

Sometime in the recent past, I had to go to the post office to claim some money (some deposit my late mother had made there). As in other government offices, they needed my “address proof and ID proof” before they gave me the money. While my driving license was enough proof of identity, they being the post office got their address proof in a unique manner. They asked me to write down my address in some form, and sent a letter to that address. All I had to do was to produce that letter the next time I went there and my address had been verified.

So here’s how I’d adapt this process relative to the UID Aadhaar card.

  • When you apply for Aadhaar, you apply simply with an ID proof. Address proof not required. You simply fill in an address in the required column.
  • The Aadhaar organization sends a letter to this address. You need to pick up this letter and go to the office again, and now your address is “verified”.
  • Now that your address is “verified”, your unique ID is now mapped to this address (note that this function need not have an inverse)
  • If you change residence, all you need to do is to go to the Aadhaar office and submit a new address. They send a letter to this new address which you pick up and take to them, and thus “verify” this address. Now your ID is mapped to this new address. Aadhaar can charge a fee for this “address change” service.
  • The next time you need to prove your address somewhere, you go to the Aadhaar office and ask for an “address proof certificate”, and it can be a simple automated process for them to produce a printout verifying the address you’ve registered with them.
Now, you need an address proof to apply for Aadhaar (if I understand it right), in order to prove that you exist. I understand that a lot of people, especially at the bottom of the social strata, don’t have a proof of address, and that is holding up the spread of the UID process. And I also realize that this address proof requirement is so that the same person cannot have more than one UID card. Isn’t there any other way to prevent duplicate issuance of the UID? What does the Income Tax department do in order to prevent multiple PAN accounts?
If this duplicate problem is fixed, then Aadhaar-as-address-proof will simplify several of the problems we currently have. All that needs to be done is to “go postal” for verification!

2 thoughts on “Going postal over verification”

  1. I can give my current residential address and my parents’ address or a relative’s address and apply for three cards under this method..they’ll just collect it and give me the vertification slip which i can give to the office and get more than one card..

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