BENGALURU: By manipulating details on Aadhaar cards, traffickers are easily bringing in minors to Bengaluru for work. The Government Railway Police (GRP) have detected 244 such cases this year at Krantivira Sangolli Rayanna railway station alone and the trend continues.
D.R. Siri Gowri, Superintendent of Police, Government Railway Police, told The New Indian Express, that the lamination done to Aadhaar cards was proving handy for those indulging in such activities. "Much manipulation is being done to the age details in original Aadhaar cards and handed over to the kids brought by traffickers so that it appears they are above 18 years," she said. When the children are spoken to individually, they reveal a different age, she added.
It is also not clear if the names too have been changed and the cards are being misused to bring in migrants from neighbouring countries, the SP added.
M P Rashmi, Programme manager, Bengaluru unit of Childline India Foundation, said that a quick glance at these cards reveal they are fake. "In most of the cases, the birth date and month are both given as 1. How can so many of them brought in be born on the same day?" she queried.
The data supplied revealed four girls out of the 244 cases. "70 per cent of them are from Bihar followed by Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh," she said. A few were from Rajasthan, Odisha, Jharkhand and Karnataka too. "Those who are 14 or 15 years are shown as 20 years in these cards," she said.
The SP said that if the UIDAI shared the data with them, it could help them crosscheck and identify cases easily. However, top officials at UIDAI ruled that out completely stating that they were bound to secrecy under various sections of the Aadhaar Act. A senior official also said that the QR code on card could be scanned using specific apps of UIDAI to check the authenticity of the card.
Father Verghese Palli, Executive Director of BOSCO and Director of Railway Childline said that the only way to eradicate child labour was to curb it at the starting point itself.
"Creation of such fake cards are done by agents spread across villages in the States from where the children are brought in. We are discussing with the Child Rights Commission in Karnataka if they could work with their counterparts in these States so that children can be rescued before they leave their States," he said.