Sunday, March 8, 2009

Imagining India: Mobile Number as Citizen Identity

I wrote in my earlier post while reviewing “Imagining India” that I disagree with Nandan’s approach on a separate citizen database and suggested we find unique answers to our problems like using mobile phone number as citizen’s identity.

“Finally, I differ with one of the solutions Nandan proposed in ICT in India. The Single Citizen ID, this problem is rightly identified but I differ with the solution approach Nandan proposes. Stated solution approach is classic example of what Nandan’s Fellow Infosys Board Member, Rama Bijapurkar, wrote in her book “We are like that only” - India will not develop like any other country because of change in circumstances and India’s solution will have to be designed with keeping in mind the current realities. I believe India has more cellular phones than any other government generated identification document, Passport, Voters ID card, Driving License, Ration Card, PAN Cards etc. So instead of finding out any western solution of Single Citizen ID, why can’t we start with Mobile Phone Registration and start from there?”

Well, glad to see in the news that Indian Government has started working on this idea of making mobile number as citizens identification number (ID) in collaboration with Alcatel Lucent.

The idea is still at conceptual and prototype stage. If it happens, then India will move one idea forward!! Few more to go and India will be there…