Phagwara: Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Sunday said that the government will soon make it mandatory for linking Aadhaar with driving licences.

“We are soon going to bring a law which will make it mandatory to link Aadhaar with driving licence,” said Prasad while delivering his presidential address at the ongoing 106th Indian Science Congress at Lovely Professional University.

“At present, what happens is that the guilty person who causes an accident flees the scene and gets a duplicate licence. This helps him go scot-free. However, with the Aadhaar linkage you can change your name but you cannot change your biometrics, neither iris nor fingerprints. So the moment you go in for a duplicate licence, the system will say this person already has a driving licence and should not be given a new one,” he added.

Meanwhile, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley lauded the Aadhaar as a “game changer” and said that savings made through its implementation can fund three public welfare schemes of the magnitude of Ayushman Bharat — the ambitious healthcare programme to provide free hospitalisation to millions of poor people.

He also attributed the successful implementation of Aadhaar to the decisive leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying the Congress-led UPA remained “half-hearted” towards it because of its own contradictions and indecision.

In a Facebook post titled ‘Benefits of the Aadhaar – where it stands today’, Jaitley said its use in the delivery of subsidies has helped saved Rs 90,000 crore in the last few years till March 2018 by eliminating several duplicate, non-existent and fake beneficiaries.

The Digital Dividend Report prepared by the World Bank estimates that India can save Rs 77,000 crore every year by the use of Aadhaar, he said.

Through a power presentation, Prasad said, “This is digital profile of India — 123 crore Aadhaar cards,121 crore mobile phones, 44.6 crore smart phones, 56 crore internet users, there has been 51 per cent growth in e-commerce. There is 130 crore population in India.”

He also said digital payment transactions in the country have increased manifold to over Rs 2,070 crore in 2017-18.

LPU Chancellor Ashok Mittal, Punjab BJP President Shwait Malik and Phagwara MLA Som Parkash were also present on the occasion.

(With inputs from agencies)