Aadhaar’s coverage of Karnataka is expected to be completed by March 31, 2014, chairman of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) Nandan Nilekani said here on Sunday.

With around two crore people being covered by Aadhaar every month, he anticipated that one in two people in the country will have a unique identity card and number by 2014.

The “poor and vulnerable”, and “not the middle class and the rich” will be the greatest beneficiaries of the UID project, which is linked to schemes such as Anna Bhagya, said Mr. Nilekani delivering the Sir M. Visvesvaraya Memorial Lecture at the Founder’s Day Celebrations of the Federation of Karnataka Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FKCCI).

For the large number of people in India who do not have identity documents such as birth certificates or ration cards, the Aadhaar number will “hugely improve the delivery of government services”, while making sure that “only genuine people” benefit.

The FKCCI Founders Day celebrations mark the birth anniversary of pioneering engineer Sir Visvesvaraya. The Sir MV Award 2013 was conferred posthumously on the actor Rajkumar.

“While the award is traditionally given to industrialists and businessmen, Rajkumar was honoured this year for his contribution to the film industry,” said FKCCI president R. Shivakumar. Rajkumar's wife, Parvathamma, received the award.

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said that Visvesvaraya’s vision and foresight was responsible for the State’s development.

Industrialisation is key, he said, to economic growth. Author and MLC Doddaranga Gowda and Minister for Housing M.H. Ambareesh spoke at the event.

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