The IRDAI has extended the deadline for linking Aadhaar, a 12-digit unique identity number issued to all Indian residents, with existing insurance policies from 31 March 2018 until the Supreme Court decides on the matter.
New insurance policies still have to be linked with Aadhaar, said the IRDAI. Policyholders are given six months from the date of buying the insurance policy to submit the Aadhaar number.
In the absence of Aadhaar, a client shall submit any of the officially valid document as mentioned in the Prevention of Money-Laundering (Maintenance of Records) Rules, it said. Under the rules, Non-Resident Indian policyholders are not required to surrender their policy for not having an Aadhaar number.
The Supreme Court is hearing petitions that challenge the Aadhaar identification programme citing privacy concerns. There have also been concerns about possible leak and theft of data from the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) and the potential damage that may cause.
While UIDAI has maintained that its database is secure and there are no breaches of Aadhaar data from its system, security researchers warn that leaks are happening in thirdparty sites and it is important for the agency to ensure that its ecosystem adopts measures to keep data safe, reported The Economic Times.
The government has mandated submission of the 12-digit unique identity number to detect unaccounted wealth and to combat fraud and money laundering. Apart from insurance policies, Aadhaar linking has also been made mandatory for the income-tax permanent account number or PAN system, bank accounts, credit cards, mutual funds, pension plans and social welfare benefits and mobile SIM cards.