No RBI directive on Aadhaar linking of bank accounts, reveals RTI reply

Report: RBI Says Linking of Aadhar Card with Bank Account is Not Mandatory

"The government has issued a gazette notification GSR 538 (E) dated 1 June 2017 regarding Prevention of Money Laundering (Maintenance of Records) Second Amendment Rules, 2017, inter alia, making furnishing of Aadhaar (for those individuals who are eligible to be enrolled for Aadhaar) and permanent number (PAN) mandatory for opening a bank account", the central bank said.

While replying to an application filed through Right to Information (RTI) which suggested that no notice signifying the linkage of the 12 digit unique-identity number has been issued by RBI, the apex bank clarified that linking Aadhar to bank accounts is indeed compulsory.

The central bank's response indicates that decision to mandatorily link bank accounts with Aadhaar was taken by the Centre alone, not the Reserve Bank, says Moneylife. According to the RBI, these rules have "statutory force and, as such, banks have to implement them without awaiting further instructions".

The government has made it mandatory to link bank accounts with Aadhaar before the deadline of December 31.

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Supreme Court will still hear the plea to not mandate Aadhaar linkage to bank accounts.

The RTI query before the RBI was filed by news website money life.in.

Another organisation All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA) has also registered their protest against instructions given by some of the banks to designate certain branches as special cells for enrolment of Aadhaar.

Joining the Aadhaar seeding debate, public sector banks' officer union has demanded that mandatory linking of biometric identity number should be put on hold till the Supreme Court comes out with a clear directive. The Aadhaar number can be linked to the account number online, too. Telecom service providers too have been alerting their customers to link their mobile numbers with their Aadhaar numbers by February 6, 2018, citing a circular issued by the Department of Telecom (DoT).

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