The Centre government has directed telecom industries to start accepting alternative documents such as driving licence, passport or voters ID for new SIM.
This new order comes after Supreme Court had rapped the Centre for using its earlier order on 'mandatory authentication of users' as a 'tool'. Based on previous orders telecom companies ask their users to link their mobile numbers with Aadhaar.
The apex court has already clarified that Aadhaar is not mandatory for getting SIM cards until it takes a final view. “The ministry has issued instructions to all telecom companies, asking them not to deny a SIM card to any individual who does not have an Aadhaar number. We have asked them to accept other forms of KYC (know your customer) documents, and continue to issue SIM cards,” Sundararajan told Times of India.
This new move is a relief for NRI's and foreigners visiting the country. Majority of them does not have Aadhaar cards, and mobile operators denying the SIM cards.