No RBI directive on Aadhaar linking of bank accounts, reveals RTI reply

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) "has not issued any instruction so far regarding mandatory liking of Aadhaar number with bank accounts, even as banks continue to remind customers of the December deadline for linking Aadhaar with their bank accounts, reveals an RTI reply.

The central bank said this in response to a Right to Information (RTI) application filed by Moneylife.in.

The central bank's response indicates that decision to mandatorily link bank accounts with Aadhaar was taken by the Centre alone, not the Reserve Bank, says Moneylife.

"The government has issued a Gazette Notification GSR 538(E) dated 1 June 2017 regarding Prevention of Money laundering (Maintenance of Records) Second Amendment Rules, 2017, inter-alia, making furnishing of Aadhaar (for those individuals who are eligible to be enrolled for Aadhaar) and permanent number (PAN) mandatory for opening a bank account. It may be noted that Reserve Bank has not yet issued an instruction in this regard," RBI said in its response to the RTI query.

Meanwhile, customers continue to receive reminders from banks on linking their Aadhaar number and bank accounts, as mandated by the government.

''Dear preferred customer, Govt of India has mandated linking of Aadhaar with your bank A/C. Simply SMS ''AR space <Aadhaar No> space <Y>'' to 5676712 and ensure your A/C remains active,'' says the SMS being sent to those who are yet to the link the two.

The centre had earlier made it mandatory for more than 50 centrally-sponsored schemes.