As per an order by the University Grants Commission or the UGC, the Unique Identification (UID) number is now mandatory for students and teachers in Maharashtra who wish to avail of the various state- and centre-funded government schemes and scholarships.
According to a mandate issued by the University Grants Commision, students, teachers and non-teaching staff in Maharashtra will have to apply and avail of their respective Aadhar cards by June 2013.
Those who fail to get their unique identification numbers (UID) and Aadhar card will not be able to receive government aid or scholarships, in the case of students.
Among the key scholarships for which the UID will be mandatory include the 14 scholarships of the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, six of the Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry, three of the Ministry of Minority Affairs, two of the Ministry of Women and Child Development, one from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and five of the Ministry of Labour and Employment.
The announcement to make the Aadhar card mandatory in Maharashtra was first made in September 2012 in the wake of a state-wide survey of schools conducted in October 2011 which revealed that many schools indulged in malpractices by registering bogus students on their rolls.
To make the process easier for students, who'd otherwise have to wait long hours in serpentine queues to get registered, Secretary of the UGC, Dr Akhilesh Gupta issued a letter to the Vice Chancellors of 38 universities on January 11, 2013 advising colleges across Maharashtra to appoint nodal officers to speed up the process for students and teachers.
(The UGC letter can be read here.)
The University Grants Commission also announced that those students who are entitled to government scholarships will be treated on priority basis as opposed to those who do not have a scholarship.
According to reports general booths have been set up to attend to their needs in Pune and Mumbai. A spokesperson from Modern College, Pune who only indentified himself as Gaikwad, told Rediff.com that a booth has been set up at Ghole Road in Pune to exclusively attend to students.
Students from Pune can enroll at the booth after filling the UID form after 9 am between Monday and Saturday every week. They will have to carry a copy of their PAN card, Ration card/Passport to register, he said.
The documents will be first verified against the originals and stamped by the officer on duty. The next stage involves iris and fingerprint scanning, which is then stored on a computer along with your digital photograph clicked at the booth. At the end of it, you will be provided with a receipt.
The whole registration process will take anything between one or two days. Applicants will receive the card on their postal addresses between 60 to 90 working days.
According to government data, there are over 1.80 crore students studying in over a lakh primary and secondary schools in the state.
The new rule will also be applicable to students in the 32,000 odd private schools in Maharashtra, who wish to apply for centre- or state-sponsored scholarships.
Image Courtesy: Devjyot Ghoshal/Business Standard