No school, no Aadhar card for Mumbai orphans

Mar 17, 2013, 05:58 IST | Richa Pinto

Orphans who want to apply for an Aadhar card must present a bonafide certificate from school, finds social activist

When a Navi Mumbai-resident recently took a group of orphan children to get their Aadhar cards made, he realised that the enrolment process required a bonafide certificate from the children’s schools. Since the children were school-going students, it wasn’t much of a problem for him. But his concern now is enrolling children who do not go to school.

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Suresh Mathew (name changed), a social activist from the National Christian Council (NCC), has been working with NGOs in the satellite city to get Aadhar cards for orphan children. According to Mathew the card will benefit them in case they are keen on availing any kind of scholarships in the future.

Talking to SUNDAY MiD DAY he said, “The bonafide certificates from their schools act like identification proof for these children. When I went to the centre, I had carried a letter from the Child Welfare Commission (CWC) stating that the kids live at an orphanage in Navi Mumbai but I was informed that it would not be sufficient proof.”

Sachin Gaikwad, executive in charge of the Aadhar card centre in Navi Mumbai, explained that in case of orphan children, the bonafide certificate of the school where they are studying becomes mandatory, as you cannot expect them to get their ration cards. “There is no minimum age for one to enrol for Aadhar cards. Generally biometrics of anyone above five years is accepted by the system. If a child does not go to school then his/her Aadhar card can be made after getting their details linked to their parent’s card.”

Amol Dahiwale, coordinator at the UIDAI centre where the children were brought for enrolment, said that they have never witnessed such a situation before. “This was the first time that orphan kids were brought to our centre for enrolment. There is no field in the enrolment form where we could mention that the child is an orphan.”

When asked how an orphan child who is not attending school can get his/her Aadhar card, Gaikwad said, “The child needs to get a letter from an MP, MLA or A grade gazette officer stating that he/she knows of the child and that they stay in their locality.” 

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