Retail Stores of Telcos Deny Issuing New SIM Cards Without Aadhaar

A few days back, the government has clarified that Aadhaar is not a must for picking up new SIM cards. Soon after that, telcos hit back at the government saying that they never kept Aadhaar as a must for new issuing new SIMs. But retail stores of telecom operators are still asking Aadhaar card to issue a new SIM card. This news was first reported by TOI as they managed to visit stores of telecom operators in Gurugram. The publication reported that they had visited a total of nine stores: three of Airtel, two of Vodafone, two of Jio stores and various other mobile retailers. And seven out of the nine stores had said Aadhaar as a must for issuing a new SIM card.


Soon after this news broke out, we checked the same in Bengaluru city (Kundalahalli region). We visited a Reliance Digital store first, followed by an Airtel store and Vodafone store, located within 100 metres. While the store executives in Reliance Digital and Vodafone said that the Aadhaar is must for a new SIM card, the Airtel store people were comfortable in issuing a new Airtel SIM card with my Voter ID (along with a supporting local address proof). A couple of days back, we checked the same by approaching a BSNL stall placed in the same area, and the employees of the government-owned PSU were ready to issue a new SIM card without Aadhaar.

These are not some third-party stores, but the exclusive authorised stores of the telcos. It’s understandable that the Aadhaar-based eKYC verification process can get the SIM card activated in a matter of five minutes, while the verification process with other means or ID proof will take up to 24 hours to get the SIM card activated.

But the denying is something which goes against the rules issued by the government. A Vodafone spokesperson told TOI as: “Our service is being ramped up and we will soon reach out to the Vodafone mini stores as well as prominent multi-brand outlets across the city.”

The government very recently blamed telcos for the confusion as they insisted Aadhaar as a must for getting a new SIM card. But the telcos are yet to pass the message of government to their retail stores, which might happen in the next few days.

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16 Comments on "Retail Stores of Telcos Deny Issuing New SIM Cards Without Aadhaar"


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May 13, 2018 4:50 am 4:50 AM

TT why not gone to BSNL office? interesting to see how govt operater denies adhar or accept adhar

May 12, 2018 9:45 am 9:45 AM

Good job TT. These telecom liars should be called out. This is contempt of Supreme Court!

May 12, 2018 1:21 am 1:21 AM

Dont understand why SC is against mandatung AADHAR for SIMS. It saves time and money to get a xerox & phitos.

Why SC is going in 90s in the digital era of 2018.

May 14, 2018 12:49 pm 12:49 PM

You are free to get a SIM with aadhar but its not mandatory. And why should SC be involved in this? If govt. wants to make it mandatory, make it a law, why hide behind SC.

May 12, 2018 6:32 pm 6:32 PM

Is an aadhaar more secure and background verified than your passport?

Rishi Menon
May 13, 2018 4:53 pm 4:53 PM

Very true bro. many fools belive aadhar is one of the worlds best and secure project even above passport hehehe

May 14, 2018 10:20 am 10:20 AM

adhar is more secure because of IRIS scan and fingerprint which is more of biological identification.

Passport verification is still Logical ( police will only verify face and place of residence- which may change over ages).

but sole dependency of adhar is not 100% guaranteed.

May 12, 2018 9:43 am 9:43 AM

@vilas Because there are factors other than convenience and xerox money that are important in life.

Rishi Menon
May 13, 2018 4:54 pm 4:54 PM

Very true dragonmonk

mausam singh Bangalore
May 12, 2018 9:35 am 9:35 AM

Please understand that many people don’t have aadhar.. Getting anadhar in a different city is so difficult.. They ask for a local address proof.
Initially when Jio was giving free service, they were asking for local Aadhar.. Not everyone will have a local Aadhar card.. Now they accept all Aadhar.

May 13, 2018 4:48 am 4:48 AM

adress proof is easy with rent agrrment,whats issue?

May 14, 2018 10:21 am 10:21 AM

rent agreement does not come free, if staying in PG.

May 14, 2018 10:25 pm 10:25 PM

even in flat it dont come free ,but it helps in many cases