A procedure has been outlined by the telecom department for the Telcos to carry out mobile re-verification of NRIs and foreign nationals. They also directed the players to operationalize the procedure by January 1, 2018, for these subscribers. The process meant for mobile connection re-verification of NRI and foreign national subscribers who do not have Aadhaar or their phone number is not cataloged with the UIDAI.
Also, a re-verification process is been outlined by the DoT (Department of Telecom) for senior citizens who are aged above 70. This process basically applies to who do not have Aadhaar, are physically challenged, or not capable of doing biometric authentication. In an order, Dot said that the licensees must make certain that subscribers should be capable to re-authenticate their mobile connections via these alternative processes by January 1, 2018.
It stated that several representations had been obtained from NRIs and foreign nationals & overseas Indians mentioning problems being faced in re-verification by them for their Indian mobile connections. The issues surfaced as this group of users neither have Aadhaar nor was qualified to enroll for the 12-digital biometric identifier. The operators are also notified by DoT about the process for IVRS-based OTP verification of telecom users whose phone number is linked with Aadhaar.
COAI, the industry body, said that though the new procedures informed would benefit users, the process for senior citizens and NRIs was “complex.” Rajan S Mathews, Director General of COAI, said, “The informed procedure for senior citizens and NRIs is still very difficult and we would function with DoT to simplify it for the subscribers and consumers.”
Disappointment was also expressed by Mathews pertaining to the telecom department surfacing only an IVR-based procedure for OTP verification. Mathews said, “We had presented an alternative of a web-based procedure as well and that can have also been permitted, similar to the procedure for senior citizens and NRIs for greater consumer relieve.”