HYDERABAD: Intelligence agencies are sitting bolt upright after finding that a data entry operator went on an Aadhar card enrolment spree in the Old City of Hyderabad, enlisting no less than 30,000 residents in a matter of five months.
Such was the man’s hurry that in the column meant for fingerprints and Iris images, he reported that his wards had no hands at all and were blind to boot.
Aadhar cards, issued by the Unique Indentification Authority of India (UIDAI), are given only to genuine citizens of India, and intel agencies say the recent spate of fake card scams has troubling security implications. The data entry operator, identified only as Ali, was a representative of the Noida-based firm Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services, one of the eight firms contracted by the state government to enrol citizens for Aadhar cards.
Ali’s enrollment of 30,000 residents within five months, including 870 from Charminar, showed up as a blip on the intel radar. An enrolment of 1,500 applicants per month is thought to be average for an operator.
Intrigued by Ali’s quick work, sleuths made random enquiries into 60 of the applications processed by him. Side-stepping the columns for fingerprints and iris images, the operator recorded that his applicants had no hands and were blind as well. Also, investigators were shocked to find that the addresses given in the applications did not exist at all. They are now clueless as to where these fake Aadhar card holders are and for what purpose the cards are being used.
The matter has jolted the top brass in the state administration as well as the Civil Supplies Department, which supervises the Aadhar programme. Top officials are contemplating referring the probe to the National Investigating Agency (NIA) or the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
As for Ali, a case has been registered -- citing forgery, cheating and criminal conspiracy -- against him in the Charminar police station, but sources said he has scooted to Mumbai. ‘’He has not been seen around her for two months,’’ sources said.