Govt. Rubishes Report Of 50 Crore Sim Cards Getting Disconnected

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More than half of India’s phone subscribers are staring at the prospect of disconnection of their sim cards as they were procured on the basis of Aadhaar verification after the Supreme Court last month barred the use of the biometric ID by private firms, including telecom providers.

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Around 50 crore mobile subscribers may have to undergo the KYC (Know Your Customer) all over again, the Times of India reported, leading to the possibility that they may get disconnected for a while.

The government today rubbished claims that 50 crore mobile numbers could face disconnection if the SIM cards procured on the basis of Aadhaar verification are not backed up by a fresh identification. Instead, it announced a new digital authentication mechanism for issuance of SIM cards, while asking people not to “panic”. The department of telecommunications (DoT) and Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) said so in a joint statement today.

“The Department of Telecom and UIDAI are in a process to bring out a completely hassle-free and digital process for issuing new SIM cards through a mobile App which will be fully compliant of the Supreme Court judgement in Aadhaar Case. In the proposed process, live photograph of the person with latitude, longitude, and time stamp will be captured. The photo of her ID such as Aadhaar card, voter ID, etc., will be captured. The SIM card agent will be authenticated through OTP and SIM card will be issued. This process will be completely hassle-free and digital,” it added.

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Yesterday telecom secretary Aruna Sundararajan met the companies to find a way out and is also in talks with Aadhaar body – Unique Identification Authority of India, the newspaper said.

While the government had made it mandatory for people to furnish Aadhaar details to get new connections, crores of old customers would also be affected as their paper documents may have been destroyed by telecom firms.

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