UIDAI and the curious case of the man whose fingerprints match seven others

Man denied Aadhaar after fingerprints partially match with seven others

January 18, 2018 10:30 pm | Updated January 19, 2018 09:57 am IST - Bengaluru

Recently, officials at the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) were thrown into a tizzy over a curious case.

Mallikarjun Gurikar, 26, from Kembhavi in Yadgir district claimed that he had failed to get an Aadhaar number even after nearly 30 attempts across several enrolment centres over six years. He even threatened to commit suicide if he was not enrolled. Each time he would get a message of rejection or technical error.

His threat of suicide, through mail, had reached the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) and top UIDAI officials too. A guest teacher at Kembhavi Government High School teaching science and mathematics, Mr. Gurikar had raised this issue through correspondence and personal visits to the UIDAI regional office, but to no avail.

After the first communication to the PMO, which set the ball rolling, he was informed that the system had rejected his enrolment since his fingerprints partially matched with not one, but seven registered citizens, all from Surpur taluk in Yadgir district.

“I tracked them and presented them physically before the officials,” he said, to establish that there was no duplication. His number was finally generated at the Aadhaar Adalat at Yadgir recently. Of the seven with whom his fingerprints had partially matched included a child and an 86-year-old. “How could my fingerprints match with seven persons, and yet they got Aadhaar?” he asked.

UIDAI sources say the problem began for Mr. Gurikar after he, in the past, tried to help those who came to the enrolment centres. “While helping people get their biometrics right, even his fingerprints had been partially captured in seven cases. Though Aadhaar had been generated for the seven, their numbers had been deactivated by the system automatically.” Sources said the fingerprints of the seven were recaptured and their Aadhaar numbers enabled. This helped Mr. Gurikar get Aadhaar.

Mr. Gurikar is relieved now. “The first thing I did after getting my Aadhaar was link it with my SIM card. Till now, I was using a SIM card that belonged to someone else.”

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