AMN / NEW DELHI
The government today clarified that Aadhaar is desirable but not mandatory to avail benefits under the Ayushman Bharat scheme providing health insurance to poor families.
Health Minister J P Nadda confirmed that the government will provide services to all eligible beneficiaries with or without Aadhaar card.
The scheme is aimed at providing an insurance cover of Rs 5 lakh per year for hospitalisation to 10.74 crore poor families.
The clarification of the Health Ministry came after a section of media reported that the use of Aadhaar Card will be a must to avail benefits under the Ayushman Bharat. The Ministry termed the report as factually incorrect.
The Ministry said, the notification of the Ayushman Bharat – National Health Protection Mission, being issued by it under the Aadhaar Act, merely enables the implementing agencies to ask beneficiaries for Aadhaar Card to authenticate their identity.
In order to authenticate the identity of beneficiaries accurately, the use of Aadhaar card is preferable, but it is not a must. It said, there will be no denial of benefit for want of Aadhaar number.
The Ministry said, the draft notification also provides for exception handling mechanism – production of alternative identification mechanisms such as ration card, voter ID card, MGNREGA card among others in case the beneficiary does not have Aadhaar number.