Aadhaar card is the primary identity proof for the residents of India. The card was introduced by the Indian Government as a means to allot a unique identification number to every Indian citizen. This allotment would then help the Government to identify every citizen simply by the unique number allocated to him/her. Ever since it was introduced by the Government, Aadhaar card has become an important document for every Indian. It serves as an identity proof, address proof, age proof and is also needed for different types of financial transactions for authenticity purposes.
Aadhaar card is issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) which is a statutory authority tasked with the issuance, tracking and record-keeping of Aadhaar. UIDAI was established as per the provisions of the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016 by the Indian Government. It provides individuals with all types of Aadhaar related services.
Aadhaar card eligibility criteria
The Government introduced Aadhaar card as a universal document for Indian residents irrespective of their caste, creed, religion, gender or income. Thus, the Aadhaar Card can be availed by any Indian citizen who lives in India. Non-resident Indians and foreigners can also apply for Aadhaar if they have lived in India for more than 182 days in the 12 months immediately before applying for Aadhaar.
Moreover, there is no age limit for applying for Aadhaar. Newborn children, minors, adults and even senior citizens can apply for Aadhaar.
How to enrol for Aadhaar?
Enrolling for Aadhaar card is completely free of cost. You have to enrol for an Aadhaar card by visiting the nearest Aadhaar Enrollment Centre. Though UIDAI has made a website for providing online services for Aadhaar, enrolment is an offline process because you have to submit your biometric details when applying for Aadhaar.
To enrol for Aadhaar you can locate the nearest Aadhaar enrolment centre online on the UIDAI website (https://uidai.gov.in/) and you can also book an appointment online. Visit the enrolment centre, and fill up the Aadhaar enrolment form. Submit this form with the relevant documents. Your biometric details would be captured and your application would be successful once the form and documents are submitted. Thereafter, you would get the Aadhaar card through the post at the address that you register while applying for the card.
(Here is a detailed guide to Aadhaar enrolment) (Interlinking with Information on booking An Aadhaar Enrolment Appointment Online page)
How to check Aadhaar status?
After you apply for Aadhaar, it takes some time for UIDAI to process your application, allot you a unique Aadhaar number and issue the card. In the meanwhile, you can check the status of your Aadhaar application online. You can visit the official UIDAI website and under the head ‘My Aadhaar’ you can select the option ‘Check Aadhaar Status’ to view the status of your card.
A new page would open https://resident.uidai.gov.in/check-aadhaar wherein you are required to provide your enrolment ID, the date and time of enrolment and the captcha code. Once you submit these details, the Aadhaar status would be displayed.
(Here is a detailed guide on checking your Aadhaar status)(Interlinking with Information On Checking Aadhaar Enrollment Status page)
How to download Aadhaar?
You can download a soft copy of your Aadhaar card and use it for identification and authentication purposes without having to submit the physical card every time. UIDAI provides free service of online Aadhaar card download which is also considered a valid proof in all transactions.
To download online Aadhaar, called eAadhaar, you can visit the UIDAI website and under the ‘My Aadhaar’ head choose ‘Download Aadhaar’. A new page opens where you need to enter your Aadhaar number, Enrolment ID (with date and time of enrolment) or a Virtual ID to get the Aadhaar card downloaded.
For more information, you can check this link – aadhar-authentication
Aadhaar card services
UIDAI provides you with a range of online Aadhaar card services which you can avail from the website of UIDAI. These services include the following –
- Verifying an Aadhaar number
- Verifying a registered mobile number and/or an email ID
- Retrieving a lost or forgotten Enrolment ID or Aadhaar number (UID)
- Generating a virtual ID (VID) online
- Checking your Aadhaar and bank linking status
- Locking or unlocking your biometrics contained on the Aadhaar card
- Locking and unlocking your Aadhaar card
- Offline paperless eKYC
All these services are available under the ‘Aadhaar Services’ option in the ‘My Aadhaar’ tab on the home page of the UIDAI website https://uidai.gov.in/.
(For knowledge about the list of online Aadhaar services you can read the complete guide) (Interlinking with ‘List of Aadhaar Card Services (Verification, Biometric Locking/Unlocking, Bank Link Status, Auth History, Virtual ID’ page)
You can verify an Aadhaar card number to find out whether the number exists or not. Moreover, upon verification, you can also find out the following details of the Aadhaar card holder –
- Age group
- Registered State
- The last two digits of the registered mobile number
Aadhaar verification helps in eliminating false and incorrect Aadhaar card numbers and can be used for authentication purposes.
(For a complete guide on Aadhaar card verification, read this)(Interlinking with Information On Aadhaar Card Verification)
Your demographic and biometric details are recorded on the Aadhaar database when you apply for an Aadhaar card. The biometric details which are recorded include the iris scan of your eyes and the prints of all the fingers of your hand. These biometric details are recorded under your Aadhaar number and can be used for authentication purposes as and when needed.
You can also lock your biometric details to protect them from being misused or against theft. Moreover, your locked biometrics can also be unlocked when you need to use them for authentication of your identity. Locking and unlocking of biometrics can be done online through the UIDAI website instantly. The option of locking or unlocking your biometrics is available under the ‘Aadhaar Services’ category under ‘My Aadhaar’ tab. You would need to enter in your Aadhaar number to lock or unlock biometrics. Once locked, the biometrics would remain locked until they are unlocked.
(For a detailed guide to locking or unlocking biometrics, read this)(Interlinking with ‘Information on How to Lock/Unlock Aadhaar Biometric Data’ page)
How to link PAN with Aadhaar?
Linking of your PAN card with Aadhaar card has been made mandatory by the Supreme Court of India. This linking is needed to file your income tax returns, to do valid financial transactions which need your PAN card number and to receive subsidies and grants from the Government.
You can easily link your PAN card with Aadhaar online through the income tax website. You would have to visit the official income tax filing website which is https://incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in/. If you are already registered, log into your account, go to ‘Profile Settings’ under the ‘Menu’ tab and choose ‘Link Aadhaar’. If, however, you are not registered, you would, first, have to register yourself and then log into your account for linking PAN with Aadhaar.
Besides the income tax website, you can also link your PAN with Aadhaar through https://www.utiitsl.com/ or https://www.egov-nsdl.co.in/ websites.
(Read a detailed guide to PAN Aadhaar linking here)(Interlinking with ‘Information on How to Link PAN with Aadhaar’ page)
How to find Aadhaar enrolment centres?
To enrol for Aadhaar card and also to make any updates or changes offline, you need to visit the Aadhaar enrolment centres which have been authorized by the UIDAI to provide Aadhaar related services. There are thousands of Aadhaar enrolment centres and you can easily find one in your location. TO find the nearest Aadhaar enrolment centre, you can visit UIDAI’s website where the addresses and locations of all centres are mentioned.
On the home page, https://uidai.gov.in/, under ‘My Aadhaar’ choose the first option, ‘Locate an Enrolment Centre’. A new page would open wherein you can locate an Aadhaar enrolment centre through State, PIN code or through your locality, city or district.
(For a step-by-step guide to locate an Aadhaar enrolment centre, read this)(Interlinking with ‘Information on How to Find Aadhaar Card Enrolment Centres (Comprehensive List)’ page)
How to update Aadhaar card details?
If there is any change in your name, address, phone number or email ID, the same should be recorded in your Aadhaar card so that the card contains all the updated details. To update your Aadhaar card details, you would have to visit the nearest Aadhaar enrolment centre and get the card updated. You need to carry proof of the updated detail which you want to change in your Aadhaar card.
At the enrolment centre, fill up an Aadhaar update form and submit the relevant proofs to apply for updating your Aadhaar card details. The update would take some time and you can check the status of your Aadhaar details update online through the UIDAI website.
(For more information on Aadhaar details update, read this guide) (Interlinking with ‘Information on How to Update/Correct Aadhaar Details (Comprehensive Of All Details)’ page)
How to add a mobile number to your Aadhaar Card?
Your mobile number can be added to your Aadhaar details at the time of enrolment. In the enrolment form, you are required to provide your mobile number and the number that you enter would become the registered number linked with Aadhaar.
If you have not added your mobile number to Aadhaar or if you want to change the registered mobile number, you can do so by visiting the nearest Aadhaar enrolment centre. Fill up the relevant form containing your mobile number and submit it. Thereafter, your number would be added to your Aadhaar card details.
(For a complete guide to adding or updating mobile number in Aadhaar, read this)(Interlinking with ‘Information on How to Add/Update Mobile Number in Aadhaar’ page)
What is the mAadhaar Application?
mAadhaar is the mobile application developed by UIDAI to allow you to access Aadhaar related services through your mobile phones. You can download the mAadhaar application on your Smartphone and register yourself on the application. Thereafter, every Aadhaar related service which is available online can be accessed through the mAadhaar application. You can also download the Aadhaar card on your phone and use it for verification purposes whenever required.
The mAadhaar application is available on both Google Play Store and Apple Store and brings all Aadhaar services at your fingertips.
Aadhaar card is a very important document and if you have not applied for the one you should do so earliest. The online website of UIDAI and the mAadhaar application simplifies the process of availing an Aadhaar card and also provides you with free services related to the Aadhaar card. So, use the online platform or the mobile application for any Aadhaar related service that you need.