While issuing a new SIM, it has become mandatory for an Aadhar card holder, to provide a local reference while requesting for a new SIM.
According to a press release by the Department of Telecom Ministry, it is necessary for a person who holds a Unique Identification card to provide a ‘complete local residential address’ for the location in which the SIM is required, in the Customer Acquisition Form (CAF) along with the local address, and contact number of the local reference shall be entered. The Aadhaar will not be the sole basis for identification because it does not satisfy the criterion of address proof for the outstation customer. In that case, a local reference verification is required.
According to the directive, “the local reference shall be verified telephonically by the authorized agent at PoS terminal before issuance of the SIM card.” It is only after receiving affirmation from the local reference that the KYC process will begin. A biometric authentication will take place, at the PoS terminal, whose details will be matched with details given in the Aadhaar card before.
In January, this year, the telecom department had made the issuance of SIM card via Aadhaar card mandatory as a process of their Know your customer services. In case of re-verification of their existing customers, if the local reference and local residential address match as per the CAF form, then there is no need for a tele-verification process. However, if they don’t then a tele-verification process will be continued.
As of now, the directive is only for those who possess an Aadhaar card. But, it does not give any alternatives for those who do not have one. Secondly, it does not define a ‘local reference’, which can potentially be problematic for those who do not have a local reference.
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