Aadhaar for NRI’s – To get or not to get – Chat with Rajiv Malhotra

Sree Iyer and Rajiv Malhotra discuss the impact of the Supreme Court judgment on Aadhaar card for NRI's. A suggestion to PM Modi for raising funds from the NRI is also provided.


  1. It is the same problem, be it GST,Aadhar or any other policy change or government scheme,just complete lack of detail preparation and trial runs.How can you launch any scheme having juggar approach with 1.2 billion people?
    A new traffic scheme of a small town in west will have many trials runs before it is implemented.It is people with IAS tag sitting in Delhi with “we know all approach” creating this mess and totally forgetting that there are villages sitting on hilltops in Burma border or island villages in Andaman.

  2. Sri. Iyer was telling that he has deposited money in NRE and it is converted to rupees. It is not so. You can deposit money in NRE deposit and you can expatriate the money in dollars. There is one account called NRE fins where you can deposit and invest in shares etc. NRO is for conversion to rupees, which you can spend and also deposit money which came out of selling assets in india.

    • Sri Iyer is right. Any currency money deposited in NRE account be it in dollars, pounds, euros, dirhamas are automatically converted to Rupees as per the prevailing ,daily RBI conversion rate. These foreign currencies are held in the Nostra account of the Indian bank abroad ie dollars are held in US, pounds in UK, Euros in Germany etc.

      NRO money cannot be automatically taken back in the deposited currency, but if tax paid and on submission of form 15A and B of RBI, the amount can be repatriated.

      In case of NRE account, the amount can be automatically repatriated in the deposited foreign currency as per the daily existing conversion rate fixed by RBl.

      In case of NRE account automatic repatriation is permitted in same deposited foreign currency ,at the rate prevailing on the date of repatriation

      • You are right. I have erred to mention FCNR. Foreign currency deposit can be taken back in foreign currency. But if it is converted to Indian currency and deposited in NRE account, the exchange rates plays an important role in determining the return.

  3. Sri Sir, Please take this up as there are lots of friends and relatives who were hounded by banks to take the card and landed up applying with a local address and getting the card. The govt. can start authorizing Adhaar card for NRIs and start a ‘Bharat Index’ with guaranteed interest – this will generate lots of dollar amount as well regularize Aadhar card in a inclusive way for NRIS.

    Thank you, Arun

    • Banks never asked or will ask for Aadhar ID. To open a NRO or NRE account you have to submit PP copies with residence page copy / PIO copy and a nominee. Please get correct info fro RBI site.

  4. This whole issue is so painful. Those who talk of indology should think of sanatan dharma here too. Indians have strong bonds to family, friends, and places. Isn’t it against dharma to treat people as NRIs on 180 odd days of absence from India and treat them as aliens?

    Tax issue is an entirely different matter. Bank account management is a separate issue. For the later, a continuity in operation should be the right dharmic practice.. The government may place a top end limit if it wishes, but it should not force people to jump through hoops just because they wish to keep a bond with the family and the elders.

    • You are ignorant of facts. NRI is defined based on international norms.
      Say you go to Singapore for a week ,return ,open NRI account and a terrorists deposits a million dollars . Is it acceptable ? So 6 months is a cooling period and more over NRI income is tax free. Pl go thru RBI circulars and also under what circumstances foreign countries issue a resident permit ? Pl. clarify what issue is painful ?

      • I have not mentioned any fact in my comment. I merely suggested that procedures and practices related to Banks etc should also be looked at from a sanatan dharma angle.

        If you do have any say in the matter, please pass this on to those who can make some difference. The painful issue, in answer to your last question, is to have to submit dozens of papers that may or may not be required, simply because nobody knows what is really needed.

  5. A few more points, Sree ji that haunt everyone here in India…

    1. Gov. circular and clarification on the non-requirement of Aadhar for NRIs came much later after so may confusions. Also, at a much later stage the Aadhar website declared that it is prohibited for NRIs. By that time several NRIs who use to come on vacation had already taken Aadhar.
    Several had linked PAN and Aadhar while in India. (The PAN and Aadhar websites weren’t working from abroad IPs.). What will happen to those Aadhars?

    2. Spouses and children of NRI who had just returned to India for good have taken Aadhar (though technically they will remain NRI for a certain period) for their immediate needs. What will happen to those Aadhars?

    3. Several residents with Aadhar who had become NRIs later continue to use Aadhar. Are the old Aadhars valid?

    4. There were debates in some columns as as to whether treat gulf workers as NRIs in the same manner as those ‘settled’ in US and Europe for Aadhar purpose (due to uncertainty of continuous stay as per one’s will abroad). Gulf workers, mainly labourers, have their families in India. Can’t expect them to take Aadhars only for their families without taking one for themselves!

    The above and many other scenarios make me think that NRIs getting Aadhar, knowingly or unknowingly (of the gov. circular), are not at fault. Gov. may only choose the regularization route to bring some order in this issue.

    • Every country has an ID for its citizens. Aadhar is nothing but an identification of the specific individual. Aadhar has retina and finger print record of the card holder.

      Where, how, when to be used is a question being unnecessarily debated. It is to prove that Mr.X is Mr. X and not Y. India is a country where law breakers are rarely punished and basically the idea of Aadhar is to prevent impersonation. Ever here clone forgeries are in circulation.

      Any person holding Indian passport and holding a foreign country residence visa and stays in host country for more than 181 days is classified as NRI. All foreign nationals, holding PIO ie person of Indian origin is also classified as NRI.

      NRI , holding Aadhar is not essential or problematic. If he has Aadhar, he need not flash PP when ever any one asks for ID, as in hotels or while travel in India. But a day will come that every Indian, NRI will have a card like social security ID card as in US. Call it Aadhar, national card or Yellow card but it will come which retina data.

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