Aadhar can fight corruption better: Nilekani
By IANS - NEW DELHI
22nd October 2012 11:31 PM
Taking a dig at India Against Corruption leader Arvind Kejriwal without naming him, Unique Identification Authority of India chairman Nandan Nilekani Monday said Aadhaar-enabled service delivery was a more effective way of fighting corruption than TV campaigns, change in laws or having inspectors (Lokpal).
"I am as much for fighting corruption as the next guy and I absolutely believe that we need to fix those things but I certainly don't believe that passing a law or creating more inspectors is going to solve the corruption problem," Nilekani told CNN-IBN channel in an interview.
"The notion that you can bring corruption down by having a bunch of TV broadcast vans, I think that's not going to solve the problems. I think that there is a lack of appreciation of long term institutional changes required to get to what we want," he said.
Nilekani refuted suggestions that the Aadhar-enabled service delivery launched by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in Rajasthan Saturday was a pre-election gimmick.
He said Aadhar will help in making fiscal spending more efficient by reducing diversion and fraud.
"For retail transactions which involve individuals getting benefits which could either be in cash or kind... this will help in streamlining that, reducing hassles for them, empowering them. So automatically corruption is addressed," said Nilekani.
Nilekani said Aadhar has covered 200 million people and will cover 600 million people by 2014; it will be a platform for transfer, whether in cash or kind. He said Aadhar "means you fix the problem of corruption by changing the underlying system that means millions of people get better service."
Replying to a query that many government departments are not accepting the Aadhaar number, he said, "I think it's a process and I think we will see more and more proclamations from different departments. Over time it will become proof of identity and proof of address for many schemes, including for bank accounts and mobile phone connections."
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