e-KYC Through Facial Authentication Under PM-Kisan Scheme

Context: Recently  “The PM-Kisan scheme has become the first scheme of the government to do e-KYC through facial authentication mobile app. This app is very useful for the aged farmers and their mobile number is not linked with their Aadhaar.”

Issues with the existing system

  • Until now, e-KYC of the PM-Kisan beneficiaries used to be done through either biometrics at a designated centre or one-time passwords sent to mobile phone numbers linked with Aadhaar.
  • However, during the e-KYC exercise, officials found many instances when farmers’ mobile numbers were not linked to Aadhaar due to which the process could not be completed.
  • In the case of biometrics, several elderly farmers faced problems going to the nearby centre.
  • Many faced the issue of the non-matching of fingerprints.
  • Therefore, to ease the e-KYC process, the ministry introduced the face authentication feature in the PM-Kisan mobile app.
  • The face authentication feature uses the iris data of a person having an Aadhaar number.

Other Steps

  • In another move, the PM-Kisan scheme is also integrating with Bhashini to provide farmers with information in their native language.
  • Bhashini is the government’s National Public Digital Platform for languages to develop services and products for citizens by leveraging the power of artificial intelligence and other emerging technologies.

About PM-Kisan scheme

  •  Launched in 2019, the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi or PM-Kisan scheme gives beneficiaries financial assistance of Rs 6,000 per year in three equal instalments every four months.
  • The amount is transferred to the bank accounts of eligible farmers’ families across the country through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) mode.
  •  According to the Agriculture Ministry, more than 11 crore farmers have availed of the scheme, and Rs 2.42 lakh crore has been transferred to their accounts.

Mains Practice Question

Critically examine the recent step of e-KYC through facial authentication under the PM-Kisan scheme. (150 words, 10 works)

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