Shimla: Biometric UID program was kicked off by Himachal Pradesh Chief Secretary Rajwant Sandhu in this district today after recording her biometric identification at State Secretariat.
Capturing of biometric data and issuing of UID cards is already underway in three of the four zones that the state has divided for the program. In Shimla zone it was launched today, elsewhere by end of May, 7.48 lakh (10.91 %) people have already been registered. Director Information Technology Rajneesh Kumar said that this programme was already underway in Mandi, Kangra, Una and Hamirpur zones where enrolment is picking up fast. He said that pricing problem in Shimla zone has been sorted out and UID registrations were launched in the city today. Over 100 data capturing centres would be opened in Sirmaur, Solan and Kinnaur that make up the zone soon, he added.
Consisting of Lahaul-Spiti, Kullu and Mandi districts, Wipro is undertaking data collection in Mandi zone, Chamba and Kangra district under Kangra Zone and Shimla, Solan, Sirmaur and Kinnaur districts in Shimla zone, the vendor doing the UID project is the Madurai based I Grande company and in Hamirpur, Una and Bilaspur districts of Hamirpur zone the job has been assigned to ILFS company.
Target to provide UIDs to 68.56 lakh people has been set up as May, 2012, but where the project was rolled out earlier, like in Hamirpur zone, the completion target is December, 2011. Parallel to rolling out the project, the government has already begun to tie up welfare programs based on authenticated identification to ensure that the targeted subsidies reach the right person. In Una district, where the UID enrolment is nearing completion, plans are afoot to issue ration cards based on the UID number for containing pilferages in the public distribution system (PDS). The subsidized rations being distributed through the PDS system will be given to the targeted person only on biometric verification of the beneficiary, said the official.