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Aadhaar must for MGNREGS work(thehindu.)

Other proofs of identity will be allowed till March 31

From April 1, workers in rural areas enrolled under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS), which mandates 100 days of work for a household a year, must have Aadhaar.

Those who have registered themselves under the scheme will be required to give proof of possession of Aadhaar or undergo the enrolment process till March 31, a senior official in the Cabinet Secretariat said. However, ration card, driving licence, voter identity card, Kisan passbook with photo, job card issued under the MGNREGS and a certificate issued by a gazetted officer or a tehsildar will be admissible as proof of identity for the people to get the benefits till they get Aadhaar.

Those who have applied for Aadhaar can produce their enrolment slip or a copy of the application for getting the 12-digit unique identification number.

“Orders are being issued to make enrolment of Aadhaar mandatory for the States such as Jammu and Kashmir and a few others. Adequate steps will also be taken to ensure that people face no problem in getting the Aadhaar number,” the official said.

The government has invoked Section 7 of the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016.

The Section mandates that when the government gives subsidy, benefit or service from the Consolidated Fund of India (CFI), an individual can be asked to undergo authentication or furnish proof of possession of Aadhaar. The expenditure for the MGNREGS is met from the CFI.

The move to make Aadhaar mandatory for the MGNREGS will prevent leakages of subsidies and ensure that the beneficiaries get their due, according to another official who is part of the wing looking after the implementation of the Aadhaar-linked Direct Benefit Transfer scheme.

‘Widen DBT scheme’

The DBT scheme, aimed at checking leakages of welfare funds, was launched on January 1, 2013 to cover 24 schemes of eight Ministries. Under the DBT, all cash benefits are transferred to the beneficiary’s bank account. The Centre has asked its departments and the State governments to widen the scope of the DBT scheme to include all monetary and in-kind transfers. To spread the scheme further, it was shifted to the Cabinet Secretariat last year, and its implementation is being monitored by the Prime Minister’s Office.

The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation has also made it mandatory for 50 lakh pensioners and four crore subscribers to provide either the Aadhaar number or proof that they have applied for it. — PTI

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