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No Mobile Number Will be Disconnected, Go for Fresh KYC to Delink Aadhaar: Telecom Dept

Customers may have to submit a fresh identification document as part of the KYC process. This could be a copy of the passport, driving licence, voter’s card, electricity bill, gas bill or PAN card.

News18.com

Updated:October 18, 2018, 12:01 PM IST
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No Mobile Number Will be Disconnected, Go for Fresh KYC to Delink Aadhaar: Telecom Dept
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New Delhi: 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.

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.

Considering the massive impact it would entail, the central government has stepped in and asked the telecom providers to give customers adequate time to complete the fresh KYC.

Customers may have to submit a fresh identification document as part of the KYC process. This could be a copy of the passport, driving licence, voter’s card, electricity bill, gas bill or PAN card. The government is expected to give a fresh order very soon.

In a joint statement, the Department of Telecommunications and the Unique Identification Authority of India termed the reports as “untrue and imaginary”. Re-verification of KYC details is voluntary after the Supreme Court verdict on Aadhaar, the statement said, adding that the top court order nowhere directed disconnection of mobile number issued through Aadhaar KYC. “If anybody wishes to get her/his Aadhaar eKYC replaced by the fresh KYC, she/he may request the service provider for delinking of her/his Aadhaar by submitting fresh OVDs as per earlier DOT Circulars on mobile KYC. But in any case her/his mobile number will not be disconnected,” it said.

“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.

On Wednesday, 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.

The freedom to destroy the older documents was accorded by the government in March last year since the documents were going digital by linkage with Aadhaar. Mobile companies say they are waiting for a direction from the telecom department on the issue.
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