India's 'Aadhar' programme has been praised by the FATF here which said the initiative will not only ensure "financial inclusion" for its teeming population but also tighten anti-money laundering measures in the country.
"If successfully implemented, it (Aadhar project) would be the first biometrically verified unique ID implemented on a national scale and would provide the 'identity infrastructure' for financial inclusion as well as for strengthening anti-money laundering and combating terrorist financing implementation", the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) said in its updated report for bringing together anti-money laundering measures and ensuring financial inclusion amongst its member countries.
It said Aadhar will provide for delivery of social services, subsidies and other programs and national security and anti-corruption efforts.
India became a full-member of the FATF in 2010, at a time when the country was witnessing an increased concern to address the issues of black money and combating crimes like tax evasion and money laundering derived from corrupt practises.
The FATF is an inter-governmental body established in 1989 by the G-7 countries and all the major economies of the world are its member.
"Currently, many of India's poorest citizens do not have any ID cards, bank accounts or even addresses that they can use to obtain social services.
"The Aadhaar number is intended to allow individual identification anytime, anywhere in the country through online identity verification from a central database," the FATF said in its reference to the 'Aadhar'.
The Plenary session of the FATF was held here recently.