- Operators may meet soon to discuss modalities of rolling the process out
- Telecom operators say the process will cost them nearly Rs 1,000 crore
- Aadhaar will be made mandatory for driving licences post October
After drivers' license, Aadhaar-based re-verification has been made mandatory for all existing subscribers of mobile phone services, with the government instructing telecom operators to initiate the process. Members of the Cellular Operators Association of India may meet later this week to discuss the modalities or rolling out the verification process for over a billion users, which - they say - is expected to cost them nearly Rs 1,000 crore.
"All licensees shall re-verify all exiting mobile subscribers (prepaid and postpaid) through Aadhaar-based eKYC process," said a telecom department notification.
Last month, the Supreme Court had observed, "an effective process has been evolved to ensure the identity verification" for new users. It added that "in the near future, and more particularly within one year from today, a similar verification will be completed, in case of existing subscribers." Licensees, or the cellular operators, will have to inform existing users about the Supreme Court order for the re-verification process. They have also been directed to upload the execution details on their respective websites.
For the re-verification through Aadhaar, the operator will have to send a verification code to the subscriber's number. The operator will, then, have to verify this code from the subscriber so as to confirm whether the SIM card of the connection is physically available with the subscriber.
"After the completion of the eKYC process, before updating or overwriting the old subscriber detail in database with the data received through eKYC process, the licensee will seek confirmation from the subscriber about the re-verification of his/her mobile number after 24 hours through SMS," the notification said.
However, verification of a subscriber would not be required in case of conversions - that is prepaid to postpaid connections or vice versa, the notification clarified.
The government has, in the recent past, said that Aadhaar cards will be made mandatory for filing tax returns and applying for driving licences.
(with inputs from PTI)