In a move that may be termed as forcing the compulsion of Aadhaar Card, the Central government has planned to link Aadhaar card with major entrance tests being conducted on All-India basis. If the sources are to be believed, HRD Ministry may soon announce the move to link Aadhaar with Common Admission Test (CAT), National Eligibility Test (NET) and National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET).
Quite recently, CBSE had announced the provision to make Aadhaar card mandatory for JEE exams and it is not the first time that Aadhaar has marked its presence in the Education sector. The Maharashtra Government had made Aadhaar mandatory for board exams, followed by the Gujarat government and recently, Haryana joined the league. Going back to the year 2013, Kerala government had introduced Aadhaar compulsion for admissions made under the Right to Education Act.
It is to recall here that the Aadhaar identification system was introduced by the UPA government and the BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) had opposed the move. After amassing huge mandate in the year 2014, the tunes have changed and the same party-led Central government is constantly extending the usage of Aadhaar. The government has already made Aadhaar mandatory for the delivery of subsidies, benefits and services under the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016 which was passed by the Lok Sabha on March 11 this year.
For a person to be entitled to have Aadhaar card, the biometric and demographic details are accessed and stored in a centralised database.
In an exclusive interview to The Hindu, Union HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar said the government is considering to extend the requirement of Aadhaar card to other competitive examinations on the lines of JEE Main.
Centre is also planning to start a specialised ‘National Testing Institute’ to conduct all important examinations which are now being conducted by CBSE.
This [Aadhaar card requirement] is a work in progress and we will take it to other examinations also because the sanctity of examinations is very important. Aadhaar is a photo identity and a unique identity. In some States we see impersonation, which will be prevented. This is a good thing,” Mr. Javadekar was noted saying.
So, after JEE Main, other high-stake entrances will also get Aadhaar-linked. It is bound to happen in 2017. CAT, NEET, NET and many other entrances will be seeded with Aadhaar, and since CBSE is conducting JEE Main with Aadhaar linkages, CBSE Class 12 board exam may also see Aadhaar playing a role.
Since JEE Main, NEET and NET are being conducted by CBSE replicating the success should not be a problem.
Aadhaar has several benefits. control forged enrolment, impersonation and hence lesser mismanagement, which also helps to follow the educational progress of students and help build the digital academic repository move. This also helps the employers to verify education credentials to reduce job application frauds.
In October, ExamsWatch had reported that HRD Ministry is considering to set up an expert panel ‘National Testing Service’ which will conduct all entrance examinations being conducted by CBSE including NET, JEE Main and NEET. The main aim is to release the CBSE from its duties other than academic activities.