You might soon be charged for ATM transactions, debit-cards, chequebooks

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The tax department has reportedly asked top banks to pay tax on services offered for free to customers who maintain a fixed minimum balance.

These services include ATM transactions, issuance of chequebooks and debit cards, and refund of fuel surcharge, among others.

But ET reports the additional burden is likely to be passed on to customers, who might soon be charged for such services.

You might soon be charged for ATM transactions, debit-cards, chequebooks

The tax department has reportedly asked top banks to pay tax on services offered for free to customers who maintain a fixed minimum balance.

These services include ATM transactions, issuance of chequebooks and debit cards, and refund of fuel surcharge, among others.

But ET reports the additional burden is likely to be passed on to customers, who might soon be charged for such services.

DGGST has sought tax on services for last 5 years

Currently, these services are chargeable for many customers, but free for those fulfilling certain conditions and maintaining a minimum balance.

These are then treated as ‘deemed services’ under the Service Tax Law.

The Directorate General of Goods and Services Tax Intelligence (DGGST) has now sent show cause notices to several banks, demanding levy on such ‘free’ services retrospectively for the last five years.

How is the tax being calculated?

How is the tax being calculated?

The DGGST has already sent notices to SBI, HDFC, ICICI, Axis and Kotak. Others will get notices too, an official said.

Tax is being calculated after considering charges on these services levied by banks on customers who do not maintain minimum balance.

Tax will be levied on this ‘deemed value’ of the services.

ET estimates the total tax value at Rs. 6,000cr.

What does it mean for banks and customers?

Sources said banks are likely to contest the tax department’s claims. If that doesn’t work, they can take it up with the government.

But in case tax is actually levied, that will mean a high additional burden on these institutions.

They won’t be able to recover the costs from customers retrospectively, but going forward, they will likely start charging them.

 

 

Source by:-newsbytesapp

Is your name, birth date in PF not matching with Aadhaar? Here’s how to correct it

If you tried to link your Aadhaar with your UAN and were unable to do because of mismatch in Name, Date of Borth(DOB) or Gender in UAN data and Aadhaar data then you can use the new functionality provided in the UAN portal to update details. This article explains in detail EPF UAN Correction on how to Correct Name, Date of Birth and Gender in your UAN Online as per Aadhaar if your Aadhaar is not linked with UAN.

Overview of the process to correct Name, Date of Birth, Gender, EPF Details Online

The process involves employee raising the online request by logging onto UAN website.  The request will then be forwarded to Employer you can approve or reject the request online. If the employer approves then request will go to  EPFO Field Office where Dealing Assistant, Section Supervisor and then APFC/RPFC will reject or approve the request.

The EPFO has not yet provided any time limit for processing EPF UAN basic details correction requests. We have raised this issue with EPFO. Also, as this is a new online facility, you may face some technical issues in submitting the online request.

If your details are linked to Aadhaar then you cannot modify your details.

Employee raising the request

  1. Login to Member Interface of Unified Portal using your UAN and Password.
  2. Click on Manage>Modify Basic Details.
  3. Provide the correct details as per Aadhaar (System will verify the details entered with UIDAI- Aadhaar Data)
  4. On clicking Update Details, the request will be submitted to the employer for further approval.
  5. Till the employer has not verified the details, One can also withdraw the request by clicking on Delete Request
  6. After successful verification, your request will be automatically submitted to your employer for further approval.

Employer approving or rejecting the request

Your employer will have to approve the request online. It will then be transmitted to the EPFO field office. The EPF staff will then process the requested corrections.

  • The employer will log in to Employer Interface of Unified Portal.
  • Employer can view the change requests submitted by employees by clicking on Member>Details Change Request
  • The employer can approve or reject the request.
  • If the employer approves the request will be transferred to EPFO field office.

EPFO approving or rejecting the request

  • In the EPFO office, the Dealing Hand will submit his recommendations, Recommended for Approval or Recommended for Rejection with proper remarks, online in the Field Office Interface of Unified Portal.
  • This request will then be verified by Section Supervisor.
  •  Finally, Assistant Provident Fund Commissioner(APFC)/Regional Provident Fund Commissioner (RPFC) can Approve/Reject the case

Earlier process to correct basic details in UAN

if an employee wants to correct his/her basic details against UAN, employee and employer are required to submit a joint request to the concerned EPFO field office for correction of above mentioned basic details of employee.

If your details are linked to Aadhaar then currently, you cannot modify your details. Then you still have to follow the above process.

Step by step process for EPF UAN correction of Name, Date of Birth, Gender Online

Login to Member Interface of Unified Portal using your UAN and Password. Our article New UAN Unified Portal for Employees talks about the new UAN Unified Portal for Employees in detail.

Correct Name , Date of Birth, Gender through EPF Online request

 

Provide the correct details as per Aadhaar (System will verify the details entered with UIDAI- Aadhaar Data)

On clicking Update Details, the request will be submitted to the employer for further approval

Till the employer has not verified the details, One can also withdraw the request by clicking on Delete Request. You can access this option by clicking Manage -> Modify Basic Details -> Pending Requests

If your Aadhaar is already linked to UAN then you would not be allowed to change the details. You would see the view as shown in the image below.

How many days will it take to approve the request for Change of Name, Date of Birth

The EPFO has not yet provided any time limit for processing EPF UAN basic details correction requestsAfter employee submits the request

  • The request is forwarded to Employer you can approve or reject the request online.
  • If the employer approves then request will go to  EPFO Field Office where Dealing Assistant, Section Supervisor and then APFC/RPFC will reject or approve the request.

For many people who have used this facility, it has taken more than 15 days and still the request has not been approved. We have raised the issue with EPFO through our twitter account.

EPFO reply to such concerns is as follows. You can click on you appropriate Zone and get email and contact details of the EPFO.

Source by:-bemoneyaware

Students alert! UGC releases list of 24 fake universities;

The University Grants Commission or UGC has released a list of 24 fake Universities, warning the students to protect themselves from getting fleeced. UGC said that these 24 self-styled institutions are functioning in contravention of the UGC Act and have been declared as fake. This means that none of these universities is entitled to confer any degrees.The list which is now also available on the UGC website www.ugc.ac.in, includes seven institutions from the national capital Delhi. Apart from Delhi, the list has universities from Bihar, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Odisha and Pondicherry.

Here is the state-wise list of fake Universities:

Bihar

1. Maithili University / Vishwavidyalaya, Darbhanga, Bihar.

Delhi

2. Commercial University Ltd., Daryaganj, Delhi.
3. United Nations University, Delhi.
4. Vocational University, Delhi.
5. ADR-Centric Juridical University, ADR House, 8J, Gopala Tower, 25 Rajendra Place, New Delhi – 110 008.
6. Indian Institute of Science and Engineering, New Delhi.
7. Viswakarma Open University for Self-Employment, Rozgar Sewasadan, 672, Sanjay Enclave, Opp. GTK Depot, Delhi-110033.
8. Adhyatmik Vishwavidyalaya (Spiritual University), 351-352, Phase-I, Block-A, Vijay Vihar, Rithala, Rohini, Delhi-110085

Karnataka

9. Badaganvi Sarkar World Open University Education Society, Gokak, Belgaum, Karnataka.

Kerala

10. St. John’s University, Kishanattam, Kerala.

Maharashtra

11. Raja Arabic University, Nagpur, Maharashtra.

West Bengal

12. Indian Institute of Alternative Medicine, Kolkata.
13. Institute of Alternative Medicine and Research,8-A, Diamond Harbour Road, Builtech inn, 2nd Floor, Thakurpurkur, Kolkatta – 700063

Uttar Pradesh

14. Varanaseya Sanskrit Vishwavidyalaya, Varanasi (UP) Jagatpuri, Delhi.
15. Mahila Gram Vidyapith/Vishwavidyalaya, (Women’s University) Prayag, Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh.
16. Gandhi Hindi Vidyapith, Prayag, Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh.
17. National University of Electro Complex Homeopathy, Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh.
18. Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose University (Open University), Achaltal, Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh.
19. Uttar Pradesh Vishwavidyalaya, Kosi Kalan, Mathura, Uttar Pradesh.
20. Maharana Pratap Shiksha Niketan Vishwavidyalaya, Pratapgarh, Uttar Pradesh.
21. Indraprastha Shiksha Parishad, Institutional Area, Khoda, Makanpur, Noida Phase-II, Uttar Pradesh.

Odisha

22. Nababharat Shiksha Parishad, Anupoorna Bhawan, Plot No. 242, Pani Tanki Road, Shaktinagar, Rourkela-769014.
23. North Orissa University of Agriculture & Technology, Odisha.

Puducherry

24. Sree Bodhi Academy of Higher Education, No. 186, Thilaspet, Vazhuthavoor Road, Puducherry-605009

* Bhartiya Shiksha Parishad, Lucknow, UP – the matter is subjudice before the District Judge – Lucknow

About UGC:

The University Grants Commission Act, 1956 under Section 22(1) provides that only a University established by a Central, State/ Provincial Act or an institution deemed to be university under section 3 or an institution especially empowered by an Act of Parliament to confer UGC specified degrees under section 22(3) of the Act. Sub.:- Public Notice on Fake Universities Further, section 23 of the UGC Act prohibits the use of word “University” by any institutions other than a university established as stated above.

 

Source by:-financialexpress

RTGS, NEFT, IMPS: Transaction Limits, Charges And Other Details

internet banking image

At a time when the country is facing cash crunch and ATMs are running dry, the common man is worried and has been reminded of demonetisation days. However, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and the government assured the public of no shortage of currency. “Unusually large cash withdrawals” have lead ATMs in some places to run out of cash, the central bank said last week. However, as an alternative, banks provide several modes of transaction, which could come handy in situations like this.

RTGS, NEFT and IMPS are some of the payment systems which facilitate fund transfers.

Here’s all you need to know about RTGS, NEFT and IMPS fund transfers:

Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS)

According to RBI, RTGS means continuous or real-time settlement of fund transfers individually on an order by order basis, without netting. ‘Real Time’ means the processing of instructions at the time funds are received, rather than at a later time; ‘Gross Settlement’ means the settlement of fund transfer instructions occurs individually, on an instruction by instruction basis. Considering that the funds settlement takes place in the books of RBI, the payments are final and irreversible.

Normally the beneficiary branches are expected to receive the funds in real-time as soon as they are transferred by the remitting bank. The beneficiary bank has to credit the beneficiary’s account within 30 minutes of receiving the fund transfer message.

The RTGS system is basically meant for large -value transactions. The minimum amount to be transferred through RTGS is Rs. 2 lakh. However, there is no upper limit on RTGS transactions.

One can access RTGS services from 9.00 to 16.30 on weekdays and from 9.00 to 14:00 on Saturdays for settlement at the RBI end. However, the timings of banks may vary depending on the customer timings of the bank branches.

The service charges levied by banks for offering funds transfer through RTGS system are:

Inward transactions (credit to beneficiary accounts) – Free, no charge to be levied.

Outward transactions at originating bank branches –

2 lakh to 5 lakh – Rs. 30 per transaction

Above 5 lakh – Rs. 55.00 per transaction

National Electronic Funds Transfer (NEFT)

According to RBI’s website, NEFT is a payment system facilitating one-to-one funds transfer. Under NEFT, one can electronically transfer funds from any bank branch to any individual, firm or corporate, having an account with any other bank branch in the country. Individuals who do not have a bank account can also deposit cash using NEFT. However, such cash remittances are restricted to a maximum of Rs. 50,000 per transaction.

Settlement of fund transfer requests in the NEFT system is done on a half-hourly basis. There are twenty three half-hourly settlement batches which run from 8 am to 7 pm on all working days of the week (except 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month).

The receiver can expect to get the amount for the NEFT transactions within two business hours from the batch in which the transaction was settled.

However, NEFT has no limit – either minimum or maximum – on the amount of funds transferred.

The service charges levied by banks for offering funds transfer through NEFT are:

Inward transactions at destination bank branches (credit to beneficiary accounts) – Free, no charges to be levied.

Outward transactions at originating bank branches (charges applicable for the remitter or sender) –

For transactions up to Rs. 10,000 – Rs. 2.50 (plus GST applicable)

For transactions above Rs. 10,000 up to Rs. 1 lakh – Rs. 5 (plus GST applicable)

For transactions above Rs. 1 lakh and up to Rs. 2 lakh – Rs. 15 (plus GST applicable)

For transactions above Rs. 2 lakh – Rs. 25 (plus GST applicable)

Immediate Payment Service (IMPS)

IMPS is a real-time payment service that one can use throughout the day including holidays. This service is offered by National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) that offers customers the option of transferring money instantly through banks and RBI-authorised Prepaid Payment Instrument (PPIs) issuers across the country. PPIs are payment instruments that facilitate purchase of goods and services, including financial services, remittance facilities, against the value stored on such instruments.

Unbanked customers can also transfer funds through IMPS by using the services of PPIs, said NPCI on its website.

However, the charges for transfer through IMPS is decided by the individual member banks and PPIs.

Source by:- ndtv

Indian Railways Offers Up To 100% Concession On Ticket Prices To Some Passengers.

indian-railways
Indian Railways offer concessions on ticket prices to different categories and the quantum of these concession ranges from 25 per cent to 100 per cent. According to Indian Railways portal-indianrail.gov.in, there are some general rules which the passenger must know in order to avail the concession. Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC), the online ticket booking portal currently only offers concession on senior citizen tickets. Other concession tickets can be availed at the Passenger Reservation System (PRS) counters at any Indian Railways reservation office, said IRCTC. Children below 12 years need to pay only 50 per cent fare, as for normal tickets.
Here’s a list of concessions given by Indian Railways on ticket prices as mentioned on the portal:
  1. Disabled passengers: Orthopedically handicapped/ paraplegic persons who cannot travel without escort – for any purpose, blind persons traveling alone or with an escort for any purpose, mentally retarded persons who cannot travel without escort – for any purpose can avail up to 75 per cent concession in second class, sleeper, first class, third AC, AC chair car and 50 per cent concession in 1AC and 2AC. 25 per cent concession is available for such specially abled passengers in 3AC and AC chair car of Rajdhani and Shatabadi trains. One escort in also available for same element of concession. In case of deaf and dumb person travelling alone or with an escort – for any purpose, can avail up to 50 per cent concession in 2nd class, sleeper and 1st class. (Also read: IRCTC South India Tour)
  2. Senior citizens: For men who are either 60 years old or above, Indian Railways give 40 per cent concession in all classes. Women who are either 58 years old or above can avail 50 per cent concession in all classes. This concession is also available in Rajdhani, Shatabdi and Duronto trains. (Also read: Indian Railways Luxury Trains: Features, Schedule And Other Details Here)
  3. Students: Students going to hometown and educational tours and who belong to general category can avail 50 per cent concession in second class and sleeper class. For SC/ST category of such students, the concession available is 75 per cent in both the classes. Girls up to graduation and boys up to class 12 (including students of Madrasa) between home and school are eligible for free second class MST. (Also read: From First Train In 1853 To Online Bookings Via IRCTC, Indian Railways Covered A Long Distance In Its 165 Years)
  4. War widows: War widows traveling for any purpose, widows of policemen and paramilitary personnel killed in action against terrorists and extremists traveling for any purpose, widows of defence personnel killed in action against terrorists and extremists traveling for any purpose and widows of martyrs of operation Vijay in Kargil in 1999 traveling for any purpose can avail 75 per cent concession in second and sleeper class. (Also read: IRCTC e-Ticket Booking: Latest Rules For Booking Tatkal, Non-Tatkal Tickets)
  5. Patients: Cancer patients traveling alone or with an escort for treatment/periodic check-up, can avail 75 per cent concession in second class, 1st class, AC chair car, 100 per cent concession in sleeper and 3AC, 50 per cent concession in 1AC and 2AC. Thalassemia patients traveling alone or with an escort for treatment/periodic check-up, heart patients traveling alone or with an escort for heart surgery, kidney patients traveling alone or with an escort for kidney transplant operation/dialysis can avil 75 per cent concession in secomd class, 1st class and AC chair car. 50 per cent concession is applicable for such aptients in 1AC and 2AC.

Source by:-ndtv

WhatsApp 2.18.124 Beta Introduces Three New and Innovative Features

whatsapp image

whats app image

WhatsApp is one of the most popular apps in the world with nearly 66 million downloads only on Android. This is a multi-platform app which means that it runs on different operating systems starting with Google’s Android and ending with Apple’s iOS. However, the thing that makes WhatsApp special is the plethora of cool communication-themed features that it offers.

Free Calls & Texts

This app first became popular a couple of years ago when it started giving people the ability to place free video calls and to send texts. Being able to lower how much the monthly phone bill costs is one of WhatsApp’s greatest strengths, but that’s not the best thing about this app.

Over the course of years WhatsApp has improved from a single calling/texting app to something much bigger. WhatsApp now allows people to place video calls, send files and more importantly send pictures without losing a part of their quality during the sharing process. Nonetheless, the reason why WhatsApp is making headlines today is because a brand-new update just arrived.

WhatsApp 2.18.124 Beta

We’ve previously mentioned how WhatsApp evolved over the course of years, but the team of developers who is behind this app keeps on rolling out new features every other week. In fact, this latest 2.18.214 Beta update contains not one, but three cool features.

Two of theses features are focused towards improving WhatsApp’s group activities. Therefore, the first feature allows people to search for individuals in a list of participants. This feature is nice, but it pales in comparison with the second one which makes it possible for WhatsApp users to switch between voice and video calls by simply tapping the “video button” during a call.

The third feature allows group admins to add descriptions. This feature can be used by admins not only for basic descriptions, but also to keep participants updated on the latest news.

Patanjali Recruitment For Freshers Apply For Latest Patanjali Vacancy

patanjali-jobs

patanjali-jobs

Patanjali Recruitment For Freshers – latest patanjali jobs opening in 2018 This is the Good news by the official sources now that the Patanjali Ayurved Ltd initiates the qualified and reasonable contenders to fill the distinctive empty seats in the organization. Consistently organization contracting the different job notifications for various work profile in various division. Thus, if you not make a difference for any employments through organizations prerequisite then don’t squander your valuable time and get the insights about Patanjali Recruitment 2018 and apply for the same. These all opening are accessible for freshers and exp. Contenders and in addition. Applicants if you need to Patanjali Recruitment Latest Graduate Degree/Post Graduate Diploma or Degree Jobs then snap here for apply on the online.

Patanjali Recruitment Upcoming Jobs 2018 details-

These all  employments have various type of working field. Here you can get the insights about these opportunities of Patanjali jobs 2018 or Patanjali Recruitment 2018 with other vital points of interest that you should need to know whether you will apply for this Patanjali Jobs Notification 2017 such qualification Criteria, Important Events, Selection Process, Educational Qualification thus more other communicate through this individual page. Hopefuls apply for Latest Private Jobs 2018 click here.

Hiring Organization: – Patanjali Ayurved Ltd

Post Name:- Various Posts

Job Type: – Private Job

Experience: – Fresher & Experience

Mode of Application: – Online

Required Qualification: – Contenders probably passed their 10th/12th/graduate/MBA/B.tech degree in the important field from any approved college/Board/Any other instructive Institutions with a fine scholastic record.

Salary Details: – Every one of those fortunate contenders will’s identity chose as a representative through this Patanjali Recruitment 2018 will get an appealing pay scale for each month as a pay bundle by the association. The organization gives such a large number of different stipends to their representatives according to the association standards.

Hiring Process: – Candidates will be hired as per company’s criteria such as written and Interview.

Age Limit: – Candidates who are above 18 can apply for the various posts.

How to Apply: – Firstly log in on official website of Patanjali ayurved Select suitable link related to vacancy Read carefully given information and guidelines.

After that, applying for vacancies need to fill online application forms And upload required documents with passport size photo Lastly, submit it And take a print out for future use.

Source by:-careersupdate

Aadhaar-bank account linking update: RBI issues new KYC guidelines

Aadhaar Bank Account Linking update: It is now compulsory for customers to link the national biometric ID Aadhaar to bank accounts, according to the updated ‘Know Your Customer (KYC)’ guidelines issued by the Reserve Bank of India. However, there is a condition. The RBI guidelines say linking a bank account to Aadhaar will be mandatory subject to the final decision of the Supreme Court on the Aadhaar-Bank Account linking matter.

Here are top points you should know about the latest RBI guidelines:

  • The KYC documents till now included: Officially Valid Document (OVD) for address proof along with the Permanent Account Number (PAN) and a recent passport size photograph.
  • The amended Customer Due Diligence (CDD) procedure of the RBI now says, “The Aadhaar number, the PAN or Form No. 60” need to be obtained from an individual who is eligible for applying for the biometric ID.
  • The new guideline is expected to facilitate a trusted environment for banking services.
  • In the new guidelines, the RBI has removed the sections relating to the use of other OVD by banks for address and identity proof.
  • Guidelines for residents of Jammu and Kashmir, Assam or Meghalaya: The residents of these states do not submit Aadhaar or proof of application of enrolment for Aadhaar. For them, new guidelines say the bank may obtain a “certified copy of an OVD containing details of identity and address and one recent photograph.”
  • OVD includes passport, driving licence, Voter’s Identity Card, job card issued by NREGA and duly signed by an officer of the state Government and letter issued by the National Population Register that contains details of name and address of the individual.
  • According to RBI, individuals, who are not residents, will not be asked to submit Aadhaar details. “From an individual who is not eligible to be enrolled for an Aadhaar number, or who is not a resident, the following shall be obtained: PAN or Form No. 60, one recent photograph and a certified copy of an OVD containing details of identity and address,” says the guidelines.
  • What if an individuals OVD does not contain updated address? The RBI says individuals may submit these documents: utility bill of not more than two months old of any service provider (electricity, telephone, post-paid mobile phone, piped gas, water bill), property or municipal tax receipt, pension or family pension payment orders (PPOs) issued to retired employees by Government Departments or Public Sector Undertakings, and letter of allotment of accommodation from employer issued by State Government or Central Government Departments.

The KYC norms have been updated in the wake of Centre’s decision to update the ‘Prevention of Money Laundering’ (PML) rules in June 2017. In March, Modi government at the Centre had extended the date for submission of Aadhaar details for existing bank account holders indefinitely.

The Centre would issue the last date after the final judgement in the petition in the Supreme Court. A person residing in India for more than 180 days is eligible to apply for an Aadhaar number.

Source by:-financialexpress

7th Pay Commission: Crucial update

Union Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley who was away due to poor health is back at work now and wants to revive the discussions, a top source told OneIndia. Jaitley had promised that the issue would be looked into and he would not go back on his word, the source also said.

Currently, the government is battling the cash crunch which has been widely reported. This is a crucial issue that would need to be dealt with on priority. On the other hand, preparations are underway to revive discussions regarding the pay hike for CG employees, the source also said.

When the discussions resume, there would be a decision taken on Jaitley’s promise following which the CG employees who get salaries from pay matrix level 1 to 5 would be benefited.

With regard to the cash shortage which is delaying the discussions, the source said that it was a temporary problem. It would not take too long before the issue is sorted out.

In other developments, the teachers and non-teaching employees of Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan held a big protest outside the KVS headquarters in Delhi through which they sought to highlight their plight. They are demanding that 7th Pay Commission recommendations must also be implemented for them. They came in big numbers from across various states to stage the protest, which was on Monday.

When the discussions regarding the 7th Pay Commission comes up, apart from the hike in basic minimum pay, the government is also expected to discuss raising the retirement age. The Madhya Pradesh government had recently decided to increase the retirement age from 60 to 62. The Centre is apparently impressed with the proposal and hopes to put in place a similar system for CG employees as well.

 

 

Source by:- oneindia

Govt wants to link flight tickets to Aadhaar card

aadhaar flight image

The Civil Aviation Ministry plans to roll out a project under which domestic passengers can link their Aadhaar to air tickets at the time of booking. This they say would allow passengers to travel to the airport without a valid ID card, as biometric verification will be done at the airport to confirm their identity. Making the boarding process paperless, passengers will, however, need to carry a mobile phone with their e-boarding card, which will then be scanned at security and at the boarding gate. This the Ministry claims will remove cases of fake tickets and help locate missing passengers at airports.

In June last year, the Minister of State for Civil Aviation, Jayant Sinha had launched a report on ‘DigiYatra’ and briefed the media about the ‘DigiYatra’ initiative of the Ministry. He claimed that the initiative will develop a digital ecosystem that will ensure a seamless, consistent and paperless service for the customers.

Under this initiative, the flyers’ biometrics will be checked and verified using infrastructure like retina scan, fingerprint scanners etc and the Aadhaar-linked airline database will show which flight they are to board and which parts of security and boarding procedure they have cleared and which ones are left, thus eliminating the need to show paper ID cards, paper tickets and boarding passes.

The process is not yet finalised and some changes are expected. Earlier this week, Aviation Secretary RN Choubey told the Times of India that the government will issue a template for this “Digi-yatra” by the end of this month and this process could be flagged off at Bengaluru and Hyderabad as early as July 2018. However, linking tickets to Aadhaar is not mandatory and hence, all the airports will continue to keep the existing paper-based boarding system also.

A pilot was conducted at Hyderabad and Bengaluru airports over a year ago and the results of the same are being considered to improve the systems. When TNM contacted Archana Muthappa, GM & Head for Corporate Communications & CSR at Bengaluru International Airport, she confirmed that there will be changes in the process but no details are known yet as consultations are still going on.

“A Technical Working Committee (TWC) comprising AAI and a few leading private airports are working on it. Specific details of the Policy – currently in the final stages of development – will be communicated by MoCA. As such, until MoCA communicates details of the Digi-Yatra policy it may not be prudent on our part to put out a story. The information we currently have is dated and based on a pilot conducted over a year ago,” said Archana, who confirmed that biometric infrastucture, like retina scan, fingerprint scanning machines etc, were used in the pilot.

However, the move by the Civil Aviation Ministry comes at a time when the Supreme Court is still debating the validity and scope of Aadhaar amidst concerns of big data misuse and surveillance.

Calling the project a terrible idea, Nikhil Pahwa, founder of MediaNama and Internet Freedom Foundation said that fingerprint authentication is a probabilistic science based on percentage accuracy of matching. “Someone will be refused entry or passage at some point in time, because fingerprints may not match. It will always fail for someone somewhere. We’ve seen high failure rates in Jharkhand,” argued Nikhil.

There have been concerns about fingerprint authentication for people who do some physical labour and senior citizens. Countering the project’s purpose, Nikhil said that the new process will, in fact, end up resulting in long queues and chaos. “Given how incompetent our government is with securing data, this will be just another way that citizens’ data could leak. Aadhaar, if it is allowed to continue, should have a very limited use case, and should not use biometrics. Biometrics, once leaked, are compromised forever, especially because of their permanence.”

A report in Medianama also argued that it would be naïve to believe that linking Aadhaar to tickets will eliminate the cases of fake tickets as people who want to travel with fake tickets will continue to use the existing paper-based system.

Mishi Choudhary, a technology lawyer and digital rights activist warned that this was yet another form of making AADHAAR de facto unavoidable.

“The only other place where biometrics based identity has been used for movement in the name of ease and efficiency is in China. It always starts in the name of increased efficiency and ease, quickly devolving into a system where data is gathered and used for control. The Chinese Government can now stop people from buying air and travel tickets based on their social credit score i.e. if it does not approve of someone’s political views, ethnic identity etc.”

She questioned why one needed Aadhaar for enabling mobile boarding passes. “Why does one need Aadhaar for enabling mobile boarding passes? Any form of identity card should be acceptable. Paper savings can be achieved without AADHAAR.”

Srinivas Kodali, an independent researcher focusing on intelligent transportation systems, questioned the validity of Aadhaar as a whole, given the ongoing case in the Supreme Court. Pointing out inherent contradictions in the government machinery, he said, “The UIDAI and Attorney General in the Supreme Court are contesting that no one can use Aadhaar for surveillance or tracking while the Civil Aviation Ministry wants to also track where a passenger is inside the airport to avoid delays in boarding. The Civil Aviation Ministry probably is not informing the public that Aadhaar is required for their no-fly list program. This is what China is doing to deny its citizens airport/train services based on how obedient they are about government rules.”

Suggesting other ways to reduce paper usage, Srinivas gave examples of airports around the world which, “allow different levels of security checks and faster check-ins for a premium price which the business class travellers are used to. The current process of scanning barcodes is faster. Bringing in any untested technology is simply going to increase boarding time thus resulting in flight delays.”

Source by:- thenewsminute

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