UIDAI Explains Law On Whether NRIs Need Aadhaar To File Returns

UIDAI has explained how the new rules on Aadhaar apply to various segments of the population.

Aadhaar or UID is a a 12-digit personal identification number issued by the UIDAI

NRIs Need Aadhaar To File Returns

As the government looks to expand the scope of Aadhaar-enabled services, linking of the biometrics-based Unique Identity Number (UID) with individual bank accounts, PAN cards, mobile numbers and even mutual fund accounts has been made mandatory. These new rules on Aadhaar – a 12-digit personal identification number issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) – have led many into confusion over how they apply to various segments of the population. According to UIDAI, several representations have been received by the Aadhaar-issuing body on problems faced by non-resident Indians (NRIs), person of Indian origin (PIOs) and overseas citizens of India (OCI), where Aadhaar was being demanded with regard to various services and benefits.

According to UIDAI, a mandatory quoting of Aadhaar or enrolment ID will apply only to a person who is eligible to obtain Aadhaar number. As per the Aadhaar Act, 2016, only a resident individual is entitled to obtain Aadhaar, UIDAI has said on its website. Resident as per the said Act means an individual who has resided in India for a period or periods amounting in all to one hundred and eighty-two days or more in the twelve months immediately preceding the date of application for enrolment.

Accordingly, the requirement to quote Aadhaar as per section 139AA of the Income-tax Act will not apply to an individual who is not a resident as per the Aadhaar Act, 2016.

“Most of the NRIs/PIOs/OCIs may not be eligible for Aadhaar enrolment as per Aadhaar Act…,” UIDAI said to central ministries and states in a note dated November 15.

It has further the implementing agency to device a mechanism “to ascertain the genuineness of status of such NRIs/PIOs/OCIs”.

Referring to the question of whether NRIs have to link their financial accounts to Aadhaar, UIDAI said the Prevention of Money laundering Rules 2017 and the Income Tax Act clearly stipulate that the linking of bank accounts and PAN respectively “is for those persons who are eligible to enrol for Aadhaar”.

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