The lady with two Aadhaar cards may have opened up a Pandora’s box, as to how she effortlessly could lay her hands on two ‘identity’ cards with different names and faiths, with the same photograph. Questions must be raised as to who helped her and whether this could be a racket waiting to be unearthed. Obviously, there is more than what meets the eye and officials concerned must take a serious note and possibly probe the matter, for it is not only for the data safety of the individual, but also for social security. NESHWIN ALMEIDA believes the matter needs to be probed, unless it is a case of sheer negligence

While the parish priest, the parishioners and all those who apprehended the lady with two Aadhaar cards and a bunch of scooter keys, may have eventually forgiven the woman on humanitarian grounds, considering the ‘thief’ had two minor children, the question remains why no probe was initiated by the Cuncolim police on how she managed to be in possession of two Aadhaar cards with different names.
For those who claim it to be a minor issue, the security angle should be considered, as those with malafide intentions could harm the society and even the country, if procuring dual or even more Aadhaar cards by one person was not such a difficult affair.
It may be brought to light that a fortnight ago a lady thief was caught red-handed by locals while breaking open the storage space under the seat of scooters parked by devotees outside Our Lady of Hope Church, Chinchinim, knowing that most that attend church service keep their cash and valuables there, before entering the church.
What made the case appear like no other witnessed in the area was not the fact that the lady in question was found in possession of a bunch of scooter keys, but the fact that she was apprehended with two different Aadhaar cards, with two different names, but bearing her photograph on both.
Despite a hue and cry being made for possessing two Aadhaar cards – one with a name of person belonging to one faith and the other with a name from another faith, of the same person, Cuncolim police have failed to register an FIR, nor have initiated an investigation on how she could have dual Aadhaar cards, that too with different names.
A random investigation in such cases will reveal that the Delhi police had filed the first FIR in the country and are investigating a similar situation in March 2017, wherein a local was arrested in Delhi for holding two Aadhaar cards in one name and bio-metrics.
The modus operandi in the incident at Chinchinim too was similar. Locals recovered two Aadhaar cards from the woman, where her name appeared as Amreen Shaikh in one Aadhaar card and Akshata Vaibhav Naik on the other, when she was caught red-handed stealing from scooters parked outside the Chinchinim church.
“Both the Aadhaar cards had registration number 3893 5437 1462 and it’s not really a case of two Aadhaar cards in the same or biometrics, but rather one card with two different details. But the locals backed out from filing any FIR against the lady as she had two small children and was apparently pardoned by the mob, leaving us to ignore the matter,” explains Cuncolim PI Harish Madkaiker, who elaborately defended as to why no FIR was filed or any probe initiated.
Similarly, Fr Antonio Costa, parish priest of Chinchinim, explained that the parishioners and villagers did not file a case only because they did not want to communalise the matter, as the lady was from a different religion and also because she had children below five years of age.
“The problem here is that of identify. People often make changes post marriage or update details based on changes on another identity document. In such a scenario people are left with two Aadhaar copies with different details. But the most-recent updated as per the date of issue will be the one that can be authenticated for official identity purpose. There needs to be a system to cancel the previously issued Aadhaar card or we should demand the old one and officially destroy it which is not currently done as it can be misused. However, for official purpose the government database will accept only the last issued copy,” explains Harish Amonkar, UID Aadhaar in-charge for Goa centre.
“Even worse is the fact that the Goa government is yet to make amendments to identity proof for address and many departments still do not use or accept Aadhaar card, especially at Hospicio or even the transport department for vehicle licenses or driving licenses, as there is misuse of documents like election card and license, which are devoid bio-metrics,” Minaks Naik, an agent who facilitates issuing driving licenses at Margao, pointed out.