Aadhaar – support
I had been to the Aadhar enrollment center in Vasai today morning and was not pleased with the experience there. For a population of 174396 (indicative population of 8 lacs in the Vasai-Virar region) (Census 2011) Class I town the infrastructure that’s been provided is pretty basic and insufficient. The programme was launched in the Vasai-Virar on the 18th of January 2011 has managed to get only 10% of the population registered (as on 10th July). There are currently 8 stations for the enrollment right now. As per the earlier report, the total number of stations required to complete the process by March ’12 is 23 stations. Clearly they are insufficient for the population of the region.
When the programme was launched, the VVMC planed to create awareness through cable channels and by distributing pamphlets to residential buildings also banners were to be put up giving details of the project. Though the awareness has been created to some extent, the infrastructure required to carry out this exercise is falling short. Vasai has just the two machines at the two centers designated for the purpose – one at the Thesildar’s office in Vasai and one at the Mahanagarpalika office at Diwanmaan. I was at the Diwanmaan office today and this is what was told to me.
- The tokens for enrollment were issued yesterday (15th July)
- Close to 12,000 tokens were issued and enrollment of those will begin next month
- The next round of tokens will be issued in March 2012
- It takes about 20-25 minutes for the enrollment process
- The center does only 30-40 enrollments per day.
- The enrollment need not be done at the closest center, you can do it anywhere in the state.
How to solve this problem, Simple, speak to the corporator in your area and ask them to raise the issue in the council when it convenes next. Hopefully, this will help get more stations in the region and the exercise will be complete at the earliest.
Aadhaar is a 12-digit unique number which the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) will issue for all residents. The number will be stored in a centralised database and linked to the basic demographics and biometric information – photograph, ten fingerprints and iris – of each individual.
Aadhaar-based identification will have these features:
- Universality, which is ensured because Aadhaar will over time be recognised and accepted across the country and across all service providers.
- Every resident’s entitlement to the number.
- The number will consequently form the basic, universal identity infrastructure over which Registrars and Agencies across the country can build their identity-based applications.
- Unique Identification of India (UIDAI) will build partnerships with various Registrars across the country to enrol residents for the number. Such Registrars may include state governments, state Public Sector Units (PSUs), banks, telecom companies, etc. These Registrars may in turn partner with enrolling agencies to enrol residents into Aadhaar.
- Aadhaar will ensure increased trust between public and private agencies and residents. Once residents enrol for Aadhaar, service providers will no longer face the problem of performing repeated Know Your Customer (KYC) checks before providing services. They would no longer have to deny services to residents without identification documents. Residents would also be spared the trouble of repeatedly proving identity through documents each time they wish to access services such as obtaining a bank account, passport, or driving license etc.
- By providing a clear proof of identity, Aadhaar will empower poor and underprivileged residents in accessing services such as the formal banking system and give them the opportunity to easily avail various other services provided by the Government and the private sector. The centralised technology infrastructure of the UIDAI will enable ‘anytime, anywhere, anyhow’ authentication. Aadhaar will thus give migrants mobility of identity. Aadhaar authentication can be done both offline and online, online authentication through a cell phone or land line connection will allow residents to verify their identity remotely. Remotely, online Aadhaar-linked identity verification will give poor and rural residents the same flexibility that urban non-poor residents presently have in verifying their identity and accessing services such as banking and retail. Aadhaar will also demand proper verification prior to enrolment, while ensuring inclusion. Existing identity databases in India are fraught with problems of fraud and duplicate or ghost beneficiaries. To prevent these problems from seeping into the Aadhaar database, the UIDAI plans to enrol residents into its database with proper verification of their demographic and biometric information. This will ensure that the data collected is clean from the beginning of the program. However, much of the poor and under-privileged population lack identity documents and Aadhaar may be the first form of identification they will have access to. The UIDAI will ensure that its Know Your Resident (KYR) standards do not become a barrier for enrolling the poor and has accordingly developed an Introducer system for residents who lack documentation. Through this system, authorised individuals (‘Introducers’) who already have an Aadhaar, can introduce residents who don’t have any identification documents, enabling them to receive their Aadhaar.
The process to get an Aadhaar is pretty simple residents need to go to the nearest Enrolment Camp to register for an Aadhaar. The resident primarily needs to carry an ID proof and a residence proof – Original : Ration Card , Pan Card or Passport or Driving licence or Any government ID.
Upon registering for Aadhaar, residents will go through a biometric scanning of ten fingerprints and iris. They will then be photographed and given an enrolment number upon completion. Depending on the enrolment agency, residents will be issued an Aadhaar number within 60 to 90 days.
There are some people in your life that you feel were the ones who were necessary to make your life complete. To make your life the way it is right now. To make your life a lot much better than what it was earlier.
One such person has been there for me in my life. Br. Keane, he was my principal when I first met him. An ever smiling face, that heavy ‘chest fallen down’ stomach, those loving eyes hovering around above the spectacles.
He used to sit just next to the stair case when we used to come in to school every day, wishing everyone and poking fun at us. Many of the learning’s that the formal education of school did not impart came from him, at least for me. No mugging of answers was his tip, he encouraged us to write the answers in our own words rather than copy pasting the words in the text books. This, he said makes you understand the subject. Perhaps, this is why when I help my cousin with her school work, I am able to provide a better understanding to her. I am able to remember and recollect what I learned in my school by just reading a few lines and then able to provide a better understanding to my cousin. One way of learning that he imparted was to read what we wrote. He said that it helped in three ways – you read, you write and you hear. This makes the brain to better understand.
He was also the one who inculcated the habit of reading in me. He encouraged us to read as much as possible. Novels, news papers, encyclopedias, magazines…
He was away during our last years of school, imparting the same life learning’s to someone else in another part of India. He told us tales of how he was stuck in a train in West Bengal for over 24 hours at a single spot due to a derailment on the track and how he helped build schools and homes for people who were less fortunate.
I kept in touch with him with regular letters, he used to write to me even though he had a busy schedule and used to complain that I did not write enough. Whenever he was in Vasai, he used to come home and sit on the swing and then we used to talk for hours. Then there was this phase when I did not receive a single reply to my letters.
I was in Dublin when I got the news of his heart attack from Br. Pinto and I was desperately trying to reach him. I called in a few times only to get a message that he was resting. Finally luck smiled on me and I got to talk to him, I cried that day while talking to him, the words were unable to come out of my mouth but he never sounded so calm before. We talked a good 10-15 minutes that day. I wanted to go to either Goa or Bangalore where he was after I was back from Dublin but then I never got to make those trips due to the time factor. We met though, in December, he was in Vasai to attend the final professions of two brothers. We exchanged email addresses and we continued our correspondences via email. One of email in 2008, he mentioned that he faced some difficulties with his eyes as he had cataract in both his eyes and he asked me to remember him in my prayers. I wrote a very emotional mail to him which sadly was not replied
Then I heard something that literally shook the ground beneath my feet. Br. Keane was not keeping well and he was moved to Ireland and then I got this mail:
Br. Keane passed away on the 16th February at 9.30 PM IST at Beaumont
Hospital Baldoyle, Ireland. He was 77 years old. He had a massive heart
attack two days prior to his passing away from which he never
recovered. May God grant his soul eternal rest.
I cried that day. I went ahead and shared the news with all my school mates and I had an inbox full of condolences. And today, even after two years of his death, Br. Keane continues to inspire me and show me the best way to life my life.
He has served in India for 57 years starting from 4th November 1951.
Here is a glimpse of what this man was. I can proudly say that I am what I am because of Br. Keane.
Tony was not one to confine himself to school and classroom where he expended great energy in teaching. He had a very personal interest in the lives of his pupils and was genuinely supportive of them in their problems and difficulties. He spent two terms travelling around India on vocation promotion and gave himself fully to the task. His interest in the new recruits did not cease once they had joined but continued over time through letters and visits.
He was one of the pioneers who moved into the village of Amgi in Surat District. He was very happy to be there and shared the lives of the simple village folk as he struggled to come to terms with the intricacies of Gujarati. He was always ready to face any challenge and did his best pick up some of the local village dialect which unfortunately had no resemblance to Gujarati.
In later life he became involved with some village folk in Tamilnadu who had suffered loss during the tsunami. His priority was to try to provide proper housing for the affected people and in this he was helped in great part by the generosity of his large circle of friends in Ennis and elsewhere. He took great satisfaction in the opening of the first church in the world dedicated to Blessed Edmund Rice in Sivagangi, Madurai.
There have been a number of challenges that I have faced in these 27 years that I have lived so far. Some have been met with success, some with failure, while some I have failed to notice.
Now, a new challenge awaits me. All through my 27 years, I have never lived away from my family for a long time. Discounting the trip to Dublin which was a two and a half month affair.
Now, I have to move on to a complete new city away from my family for a longer duration.
There are one too many thoughts that are running through my mind right now on how I’ll be able to manage things there. Life at home was easy. You have the house to live in, have mom to cook you delicious food, have friends and family to take care of all the other things. In short you realy did not have to worry about the other things in your life they merged into it almost seamlessly.
The problem now is that I would have to integrate these other things into my life so as not to disturb the continuity of life.
Results for the Vasai-Virar municipal corporation were declared on Monday, a day after the civic body saw its first election on Sunday.
The corporation was formed on July 3, 2009. The Bahujan Vikas Aghadi (BVA) led by Hitendra Thakur retained its hold over the region by bagging 55 of the 89 wards, as per the figures given by the State Election Commission. Mr. Thakur, a former MLA is close to the Congress.
The Lokhitvadi Leader Party of Mr. Thakur’s political rival Vivek Pandit came a distant second by winning 19 seats.
The Bharatiya Janata Party bagged one seat, the Congress two, the Shiv Sena three, the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena one and the rest went to eight independents.
Five independents have vowed their allegiance to the BVA, taking the total tally of the party to 60.
The size of the Vasai-Virar electorate is 6,43,761 of which 42.79 per cent turned up to vote on Sunday. There were 378 candidates in the fray.
The region has been in the news for widespread protests against the government’s decision to include 53 villages in the corporation. The agitations to exclude the villages were led by Mr. Pandit.
With the final decision pending all the 53 villages also went to the polls.
Last Friday the demolition finally came to an end. Ending a month long wait to see the land flat. Punctured by the halt in construction activity the contractor was finding it difficult to get vehicles for transporting the debris from the house.
So once we had the flat land we had to measure it and make two parts of it for us and our uncle.
We called in the architect and he came in on Saturday evening. Both the contracters were there and armed with a measuring tape and the map of the area, he started measuring the land with the tape. The lines were drawn with lime powder and there were two halts made of the total land. This was the first milestone in the construction of the house.
Also it was the first big step in fulfilling of the dream. Te next step is excavation for the foundation. Since our plans are not finalized, we do not have the plans for the columns and foundation. And since uncle has his, he has taken the opportunity to start work at his end.
More updates to follow. 🙂
Something happened in Vasai today, there was a rally organized by MLA Vivek Pandit for ‘awarding’ the Vasai Deputy Superintendent of Police (DySP) Deepak Devraj for using the in humane lathi charge to control the crowd a few days ago when Vivek Pandit was on an indefinite hunger strike to protest against the inclusion of 53 villages in the Virar-Vasai Municipal Corporation (VVMC) as I mentioned in my last post.
There was no Police presence, nor was there any Government official present for the rally. As per the rules, there needs to be atleast 1 Police person per 1000 people in a lawful gathering along with a collector or a deputy collector for large gatherings.
Approximately 1500-2000 strong gathering gathered in front of the Navghar Manickpur Nagar Parishad office near Vasai Road Railway Station with Vivek Pandit addressing the crowd asking them to form a queue. He asked each and every one to refrain from using any kind of voilence or show any bouts of anger over the public or the authorities.
The crowd moved slowly to the small road in front of Vartak College, where a makeshift stage was ready with Vivek Pandit asking the crowd to sit down and maintain silence. He then went on to speak of the entire episode of how things fell apart on Friday, the 5th of March and how in humane the police were in ruthlessly hitting the gathering at Vasai.
There were more testimonies from those who suffered from the police brutality and then there was this guy (I’ll get the name for sure) who was carried to the stage, the police had hit so hard on his legs that he is unable to stand, forget walking.
The MLA promised that the next session of the Maharashtra assembly starting on the 18th of March will see only Vasai being discussed. Ram Kadam, the MLA from Maharashtra NavNirman Sena (MNS) was there to affirm that.
Chaos reigned yet again in Vasai as protesters turned violent stoning public transport busses and lighting rubber tyres on fire. The police had to resort to lathi charge to control the crowd. Vivek Pandit the local MLA was on an indefinite hunger strike from March 2nd to protest against the inclusion of 53 villages in the Virar-Vasai Municipal Corporation (VVMC)
Vivek Pandit was shifted to the Thane Civil Hospital after his condition worsened.
Vasai was brought to a standstill with a curfew like situation and all shops closing down and no vehicles running on the roads in the afternoon today.
The Chief Minister of Maharashtra called in on Vivek Pandit from Kolhapur and said that he would convene an all-party meeting within 15 days to sort out the issue of delinking the 53 villages from the Virar-Vasai Municipal Corporation.
The agitation has since been called off and normalcy has returned to Vasai.