Aadhaar Should Not Be Linked With Voter ID Card: Union IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad

| April 2 , 2018 , 09:58 IST

The Aadhaar biometric id cards have been mired in controversy as the government pursues mandatory linking of the cards with various services.

Union IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Sunday specified that personally, he was not in favour of linking Aadhaar cards with electoral photo-identity cards (EPIC) of voters as the two serve different purposes.

"I am not saying this as an IT minister... My personal opinion is Aadhaar should not be linked with the voter ID card," Prasad said during an event in Bengaluru.

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"If we do this, our detractors will say, 'PM Narendra Modi is snooping on us to know what we eat, which movie we are watching' and so on. I don't want that to happen," he said.

"The EPIC card has been linked with the web portal of the Election Commission of India and you will get election-related information such as your polling booth and its address. Aadhaar is not related to this," added the union minister.

Prasad, however, strongly defended linking Aadhaar cards with bank accounts, saying that it would bring in transparency.

"There is a clear difference between the Aadhaar of Modi and the Aadhaar of Manmohan Singh. While Singh's Aadhaar had no support of law, Modi's Aadhaar is backed by law, and security and privacy are completely ensured," said Prasad.

The IT minister highlighted that more than 80 crore mobile phones had been linked to bank accounts under the Centre's Jan Dhan, Aadhaar and Mobile numbers 'JAM' trinity, with over 31 crore Jan Dhan accounts being opened and another 120 crore mobiles becoming linked to Aadhar.