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What does the Aadhaar and Other Laws (Amendment Bill), 2018 do?

The Aadhaar and Other Laws (Amendment Bill), 2018 has been tabled in the lower house of the Parliament for consideration, despite resistance from opposition parties. The bill seeks to amend three acts: the Aadhaar Act 2016, the Indian Telegraph Act, 1885 and the Prevention of Money-Laundering Act, 2002. The bill can be read here. [embeddoc url="https://www.medianama.com/wp-content/uploads/Aadhar-Amendment-Bill-2018.pdf" download="all"]. What does this amendment do? The proposed amendment allows private bodies such as banks and telcos to use Aadhaar as one of the 'know your customer' (KYC) methods for authenticating users. This is in contravention to the Supreme Court's judgment on Aadhaar which limited the Aadhaar authentication for services, subsidy and benefits under Section 7 of the Act. The judgment also disallowed private companies from using Aadhaar by striking down Section 57 of the Aadhaar Act. Here are some of the important proposed changes in the current amendment: 1. Expanding the meaning of the "Aadhaar number": The Aadhaar number will also include "any alternative virtual identity generated." What this means: Earlier, the Aadhaar number only referred to the 12 digit UID number given by the UIDAI upon receipt of demographic and biometric information of an Indian resident. Now, it has been expanded to include the sixteen digit Virtual ID that people can use to mask their Aadhaar number and share information with third parties. The expanded definition effectively brings the Virtual ID also under the Act. 2. Overarching powers for the UIDAI: The proposed amendment gives power to the UIDAI to issue directions to any entity in the…

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