New Delhi: The Aadhaar card has now been made mandatory for government subsidy on purchase of kerosene and benefits of Atal Pension Yojana.
Those availing kerosene subsidy or contributing for the pension scheme will now be required to furnish proof of possession of Aadhaar number or undergo the enrolment process to get the benefits, officials said today. The last date to get the Aadhaar or enrolment for getting it will be September 30, in case of Kerosene subsidy. For the Atal Pension Yojana, the deadline for getting the Aadhaar is June 15, they said, quoting an official order. However, till an Aadhaar card is obtained, ration card, driving licence, voter identity card, Kisan passbook with photo, job card issued under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) and a certificate issued by a gazetted officer or a tehsildar will be considered as proof of identity for the benefits. It has been also decided to link the Aadhaar number with the ration card issued to households availing the benefits or with the bank account for cash transfer benefit. The Ministry of Oil and Natural Gas has introduced Direct Benefit Transfer through which subsidy is transferred directly to the bank accounts of the beneficiaries, who purchase the PDS kerosene at non-subsidised rate.
The decision to make Aadhaar mandatory for these two schemes will prevent leakages of subsidies and ensure that the beneficiaries get their due. For this, the central government has invoked Section 7 of the Aadhaar Act, 2016, which mandates that when the government gives subsidy, benefit or service from the Consolidated Fund of India (CFI), an individual can be asked to undergo authentication or furnish proof of possession of Aadhaar.
The Centre allocates subsidised kerosene to the states and Union Territories as affordable cooking fuel for domestic use, mainly to those living below the poverty line. Under the Atal Pension Yojana, which is available to all the citizens in the age group of 18-40 years, a subscriber would receive a minimum guaranteed pension of Rs 1,000 to Rs 5,000 per month, depending upon his contribution, from the age of 60 years.
The same pension would be paid to the spouse of the subscriber and on the demise of both the subscriber and the spouse, the accumulated pension wealth is returned to the nominee.