Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday, while presenting the annual Budget, proposed to make it possible to quote an Aadhaar number instead of a Permanent Account Number, or PAN, in cases such as filing income tax returns. Sitharaman said that this will allow those who do not have a PAN card to give their Aadhaar number whenever needed.
Sitharaman also proposed to issue Aadhaar cards to non-resident Indians with Indian passports after they arrive in India. Sitharaman said that the unique identification cards should be given without the mandatory 180-day wait.
“I propose to consider issuing Aadhaar Card for Non-Resident Indians with Indian passports after their arrival in India, without waiting for the mandatory 180 days,” the finance minister said in Parliament.
The first full-time woman finance minister of India began the day by ditching the British-era tradition of carrying a red briefcase for the ‘bahi-khata’. Chief Economic Advisor Krishnamurthy Subramanian claimed that the ledger was “Indian tradition”, and said “it symbolises our departure from slavery of Western thought”.
Sitharaman presented the first Union Budget of the new government on Friday. The government had released the Economic Survey for 2018-’19 on Thursday.