With the Centre planning to introduce Aadhaar-related monetary transaction facilities, including transfers of funds, Bihar stands a fair chance of becoming the forerunner of cashless economy. For, it ranks third in the country with regard to Aadhaar enrolments.
Aadhaar numbers have been generated for 7.9 crore of the state’s over 10 crore population, according to sources in the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), which is mandated to generate the identity numbers. Urban population apart, at least 82.16% of people in Bihar’s countryside also use mobile phone, according to the provisional SECC (socio-economic and caste census) data released by the Centre on July 4 this year.
Mobile phone is an important tool for making app-based transactions. That not all the cellphones in use in Bihar are smart phones is a cause of concern though. “Not more than 20% people in Bihar use smart phones as on date,” a mobile service firm executive said on Friday, adding, however, that the use of smart or android phones, which support net connectivity, is increasing by 15-20% every year.
Aadhaar is a 12-digit individual identification number, which can be utilised for an array of services, including opening bank accounts and obtaining a PAN or sim card.
The UIDAI is now developing a mobile app that can be used by shopkeepers, merchants or individuals for receiving payments. Such online transactions can be made between bank account holders by feeding the Aadhaar number in the mobile set having the Aadhaar app.
Officials in UIDAI regional HQ in Ranchi said on Friday they target to achieve 100% enrolment in Bihar by the end of current finacial year on March 31, 2017.
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