Aadhaar no will be used to streamline PDS: UIDAI

New Delhi: The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) Chief Nandan Nilekani today said Aadhaar numbers will be used for streamlining the Public Distribution System (PDS) and plugging leakages in it. "The draft food security bill clearly says that Aadhaar will be used for the enrollment into PDS because that is a very important way of eliminating ghosts and duplicates from the system," he told reporters here.

He said this while responding to reports that the Food Ministry is not keen on using the Public Distribution System Network (PDSN)– a technology back-office and central system which was suggested by a task force headed by Nilekani. According to reports, the Food Ministry is keen to use the information technology platform developed by the state-run National Informatics Centre for revamping the PDS.

On media reports, Nilekani said, "I am not aware of this. The Food Ministry is very much promoting use of Aadhaar in PDS. There was a taskforce which I was heading. It has come out with creation of body called PDS Network which will operate the PDS. That report is under consideration by the government," he added.

About progress in the project, he said, "We have completed the initial pilot (project) of 20 crore (enrolments). We will roll out the (enrollment programme for 40 crore people) in April." The Cabinet Committee on UIDAI headed by the Prime Minister has recently mandated the body to enroll 40 crore more people in the country across the 16 states. UIDAI has also launched its online authentication facility today, using which a person can be identified.