Aadhaar linkage: SIM card of 50 crore users may get disconnected

NEW DELHI: Nearly 50 crore mobile connections procured through Aadhaar verification may face disconnection of their SIM cards, the Times of India reported.

The issue has come to the fore following the Supreme Court’s verdict restraining the use of biometric ID for authentication purposes by private firms, including telecom providers.

Almost half of India’s phone population belongs to the newest entrant Reliance Jio and they would be more affected since it has been giving SIM cards only through the biometric route.

Customers of Vodafone-Idea, Bharti Airtel and state-owned BSNL and MTNL could also be at risk of getting their SIM cards disconnected.

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On Wednesday, telecom secretary Aruna Sundararajan discussed the issue with telcos at a meeting to find a way out and is also in talks with Aadhaar body – Unique Identification Authority of India, the publication said.

The central government will give customers adequate time to complete the fresh KYC (know your customer).

“We want to ensure that it is a smooth transition with little problems for subscribers,” she told TOI.

Customers would be asked to submit an alternative ID and address proof such as a voter’s card or PAN card, passport, driving licence, electricity or gas bill for obtaining a SIM card or face disconnection if they don’t submit.