Linking PAN to Aadhaar cards may be painful for many

06 April 2017

Millions across the country face problems with the government's move to link PAN numbers to their Aadhaar cards by 31 July, a prerequisite for filing tax returns.

Also, with manual intervention not possible for rectification of even minor differences, chartered accountants have been deluged with SOS messages from harried clients.

Thanks to the mismatch between the Aadhaar database and PAN database, people may be faced with problems like the Aadhar database not being able to recognise special characters such as an apostrophe (as in D'Silva, for example) while the PAN card does.

This would also be the case with some people whose PAN card details had full stops between initials, which the Aadhaar card database does not support. They would find it impossible to change their names on the PAN card as it would mean having to change several other documents.

According to chartered accountants and lawyers, the government should enable manual intervention for linkage, especially in the case of such minor discrepancies.

Some CAs opine the government should form a special cell as many taxpayers have had PAN cards for 15-20 years and getting a new PAN card and updating all other documents would be impossible. Therefore it would be better to correct the details in the Aadhaar database, they say.

Meanwhile, at a time with the legitimacy of mandating Aadhaar for services such as filing of income tax returns was being debated, the ministry of electronics and information technology, along with banks, was working on a campaign to push for seeding of Aadhaar with bank accounts in an effort to promote digital payments, according to government sources.

The Indian Express reported citing a source saying that a campaign document prepared by the IT ministry proposed to disseminate information that ''in order to be able to undertake digital transactions and pay or receive money'' every individual would need to ''link their mobile number with their bank account'' and ''link their Aadhaar number with their bank account''.

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