How to Get Aadhar Card for an NRI

Updated on August 11, 2023
At a Glance: Aadhaar is a 12-digit identification number linked to biometric data, serving as a replacement for various identification methods in India. NRIs can now obtain Aadhaar cards without having to wait 182 days by enrolling through “Aadhaar on Arrival.” These cards make it easier for NRIs to identify themselves and access government services. To obtain an Aadhaar card, NRIs need to gather necessary documents, set up an appointment, submit the documents in person, attend a biometric appointment, and wait for the card to be delivered. Additionally, they can opt for a digital version called e-Aadhaar.

If you’re a non-resident Indian and Indian citizen, you are required to enroll in the Aadhaar Yojna, which means you will have to get an Aadhar card. However, you may have no idea how you can get this card and where to even start the process. So, how to get Aadhaar card for NRI? Let’s look into the matter and see how you can obtain your card as an NRI.

What Is an Aadhar Card?

Aadhaar is a system that offers NRIs identification numbers. This individual identification number has 12 digits, and it is linked to the biometric data of the owner. Basically, this system serves as a replacement for all the other identification methods used by India in the past, which include ration cards or birth certificates. Otherwise, these documents would be at risk of being damaged, lost, and stolen.

With the Aadhaar system, you can stop worrying about this. You will also have an Aadhaar card that will serve as your proof of identity, date of birth, and address.

Why Are Aadhar Cards Important to NRIs?

A while ago, the only ones who could get an Aadhaar Card were Indian residents. An NRI could only get the card in a special situation. They had to reside in India for at least 182 days if they wanted to enroll in the Aadhaar system.

But things changed in July 2019. The Government made a new decision, and they released an intimation. This allowed NRIs to have much faster processing with “Aadhaar on Arrival”. So, it was proposed by the new bill amendment that all NRIs will have an Aadhaar card issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India on arrival.

Now, NRIs don’t have to wait 182 days before they can get it. As long as they have an Indian passport on arrival, they will be able to enroll in the system. The NRI application is also the same as before, despite the fact that the timeframe is shorter.

Aadhaar cards are important to NRIs because it makes it easier for them to identify without having to carry different documents everywhere they go. But on top of that, these cards are important to NRIs because they also allow them to obtain a job in the government sector as soon as they get back. They will even be able to receive the social security schemes and government study schemes.

How Can an NRI Get an Aadhaar Card

To get an Aadhaar card as an NRI, you will have to go through a process with several steps. Basically, any person that resides in India is able to apply for this card. People are eligible as long as they are older than 3 years and are Indian residents. However, foreigners can apply as well, especially if they reside in India.

It’s important to be very careful if you want to obtain your card successfully. Here is how you can get your card as an NRI:

1. Gather All the Documents

First things first, you have to make sure you have all the required documents before you apply for your Aadhaar card. Some basic documents are necessary before enrolling in the Aadhaar Yojna. So, in order to be accepted by the UIDAI for your application, you need to make sure you have a school certificate, birth certificate, and photo ID proof.

Apart from these documents, you also have to bring some documents proving your relationship to another country. After gathering them, the government officials will look over them to make sure they are valid and that you can use them to enroll in the Aadhaar system.

2. Set Up an Appointment

After checking whether you have all the documents, it’s time to book your appointment. You can do this both online or offline. To do it online, you’ll have to go on the UIDAI website. Set up the appointment by picking the location, and then giving the site your phone number. You can then book one of the appointment slots. If you’re not in India yet, don’t worry – you can book even before your arrival.

As for offline bookings, you can go to one of the Aadhaar centers and set up your biometric appointment there. Keep in mind that the biometric appointment is a must and requires your physical presence, whether you booked online or offline.

3. Offer the Documents

Submitting the documents is the next part of the process. The documents will serve as identity proof. So, give your valid Indian passport, as it works as both proof of address and identity. If you don’t have a valid Indian address proof, you can submit any of the other address proof documents that the UIDAI approves. Some other documents like a photocopy of your stamped visa will be required to prove the relationship you have with other countries.

All these documents should be submitted in person when you go to the center.

4. Attend Your Biometric Appointment

Next, you have to go to the biometric data collection appointment. The data collected will include a scan of your irises, a scan of all your ten fingers, and a photograph. Once everything is done, you will only have to wait until your card is sent to your registered Indian address. Bear in mind that it may take up to 90 days for you to receive the card.

e-Aadhaar Cards

An Aadhaar card is a physical card, but you can also get a digital one. e-Aadhaar is the digital version of the card, and it also serves as a valid address and identity proof. It will have the same details that your physical card does, and it can be very useful if you don’t want to rely on the physical version at all times.

To obtain the e-Aadhaar, you have to go through some steps. First of all, you should visit the official UIDAI website. Then, enter your 12-Digit Aadhaar number if you received it. If you didn’t get it yet, you can also use the enrolment number, as well as the date and time of your application. These will be present on your receipt.

Afterward, make sure you click on the “Get One Time Passport” tab. You should receive an OTP on your registered phone number for it, and then you will have to enter this OTP.

Lastly, enter the first four letters of your name, as well as your birth year. This will give you access to a PDF file that has the e-Aadhaar you wanted. You can download it on your laptop or smartphone as you wish. Just make sure you have Adobe Reader installed to be able to open it.

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An Aadhaar card can be very useful as an identification document, especially if you want to use it for regulatory transactions in India. You can now apply for these cards even as an NRI, so you can set up your appointment before you go back to India. Just make sure you have all the right documents and the entire process will unfold smoothly, without any issues.

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Frank Gogol

I’m a firm believer that information is the key to financial freedom. On the Stilt Blog, I write about the complex topics — like finance, immigration, and technology — to help immigrants make the most of their lives in the U.S. Our content and brand have been featured in Forbes, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, and more.