The government is looking the national ID card project as a security measure to check duplication of identification that is one of the causes of serious frauds while implementing government programmes.
Nandan M Nilekani, head of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) said the scheme would create a verification process for people to establish claims regarding their identity. He was interacting for the first time with the media after taking over the responsibility of the UIDAI on Monday.
He said that the key issue for the government is to ensure that there were no duplicates in ID system as has been observed in other schemes. He added that the problem with identity was that many national and state projects have duplicates that have led to frauds while executing various government schemes and programmes. Nelikani was earlier co-chairman of Infosys Technologies, India's second-largest IT services company.
He said the UID would ensure identification based of biometric capabilities such as finger printing to allot unique identity numbers to people which would help in the creation of a national verification process.
''It is a database of Indian citizens, like Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee had said. It would create a national enrollment capability,'' he added.
The government has earmarked an initial budgetary allocation of Rs120 crore for the UID project, in the fiscal 2009-10. ''First, I have to go and find an office,'' he said, and went on to add, ''Let me go and take stock of the situation''.