Simplifying Aadhaar Updates

By Raju Velayudhan, Narendra Ghate, Korath Mathew Jan 31, 2021


An insight into the challenges in updating Aadhaar information and proposed solutions to simplify the process.


The Aadhaar card, India’s unique identification mechanism for each individual is, at present, a part andparcel of every Indian citizen’s life¹. This card serves as a valid proof of a person’s identification for many essential activities, right from opening a bank account to buying and selling assets. This is because of the unique nature of the card’s 12-digit number that cannot be assigned to multiple individuals. Given its nature and use, it is important for individuals to update the information in their Aadhaar card to ensure that they can easily avail these and other services. However, in a recent study, it was found that the update process is cumbersome and time-consuming. This, in turn, causes delays in access to other Aadhaar enabled services, thereby leading to heavy losses for the citizens.

With the motive of exploring solutions in this regard, CDFI conducted a study supported by the DigitalIdentity Research Initiative at the Indian School of Business to understand the Aadhaar information updateprocess in detail and to provide recommendations to improve the same. This report summarises thefindings of this study, which we hope serves as a guiding note for policymakers, service providers, andpractitioners to pilot and scale up promising interventions in simplifying the Aadhaar update process.

We extend our immense gratitude to our advisory panel, subject matter experts, survey partners, fundingpartners, and research staff for being a constant source of guidance and support. We are also grateful to theparticipants of the study for their time and perspectives. We have expended our best efforts to ensure thatthe content of this report is complete and accurate; however, we assume full responsibility for any errors orshortcomings that may have inadvertently been published. We thank all our readers for reading this reportand sincerely hope that you garner valuable insights from it.