The government on Wednesday announced that expats must apply for Aadhaar card if they are staying in India for more than 182 days and are required to pay domestic income tax. It seems that the requirement of paying tax is the main criteria. If you are on a tourist visa and not a resident and not earning anything in India, the Aadhaar card may not be not necessary even if you are in India for more than 6 months out of the year, although they do say: “Resident as per the said Act means an individual who has resided in India for a period or periods amounting in all to one hundred and eighty-two days or more in the twelve months immediately preceding the date of application for enrolment.”

Aadhaar is a 12 digit unique-identity number issued to all Indian residents based on their biometric and demographic data. The data is collected by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) under the provisions of the Aadhaar Act 2016Aadhaar is the world’s largest biometric ID system, with over 1.133 billion enrolled members as of 31 March 2017. 

Expats who have left the country should file their taxes before 1st July, 2017. 

If you have a bank account and want to keep it, you may need an Aadhaar card, though the regulation is a bit odd. The tax department announced that accounts in banks and other financial institutions that have been opened between July 2014 and August, 2015 will have to submit know your customer (KYC) details along with their Aadhaar number and self-certification to comply with FATCA regulations(Foreign Tax Compliance Act). If this isn’t done by 30 April 2017, the account would be blocked. They also said that transactions by the account holder in blocked accounts may be permitted once the self-certification is obtained and due diligence completed.

I have no idea why only those dates, but they are doing this to comply with the FATCA signed by India and the United States. FATCA is a tax information sharing agreement which was intended to enable automatic exchange of financial information between the two countries about tax evaders.

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