Matrimony Site Profiles Will Now Need Aadhaar Authentication. Is This A Joke?
A latest directive issued by Maneka Gandhi, Minister for Women and Child Development, will make it obligatory for all matrimonial sites in the country to authenticate the profiles of those listed across them using an Aadhaar card by early 2015. Till date, these sites ask for only a mobile number which is put up against the profile of those looking for suitable matches online.
So, this is how our worthy minister has decided to react to the recent Uber rape incident in which a driver with a rape history and a criminal record behind him managed to get a job, since the employer did not think it necessary to carry out a background check into his past!
“There are hundreds of people who register online on matrimony sites every month and there are increasing instances of women being cheated while looking for grooms. There are men who have multiple accounts in different websites”
Our worthy minister seems to believe that furnishing an Aadhaar card will help bring down the number of stalkers, serial daters and married men posing as singles, simply because “the pictures on matrimonial sites will be authenticated!
Fail to see the correlation? So did I. But as an old Hindi song went, “It happens only in India.”
A report in Economic Times last year had mentioned that there were nearly 35-40 million registered profile across various online matrimonial sites and nearly 2.2 million more are being added every month. Out of these, at least 10% did manage to find a spouse online.
An official with the Delhi police tells that the trend of faking identity across matrimony sites has been on the rise. He also mentioned having ‘arrested’ a man who had a profile on three leading websites. “He had sent request to over 1,000 women and was in touch with at least 30, extorting money from a few with promises of marriage and getting pictures from others. During our check we discovered in some of these websites there are profiles of actors too which are definitely fake but have not been taken down,”
Now there are a few questions which came to my mind as I was reading about our esteemed Minister’s brilliant reaction to the rape case:
- Is having a profile at more than one matrimony sites a crime? Why can not a person look for a suitable spouse on another site as well after listing himself in one place?
- Are those with Aadhaar cards less likely to commit crimes? Does that, by any stretch of imagination, mean that if Shiv Kumar Yadav (the accused in the Uber case) had an Aadhaar card instead of a background check, it would have deterred him from assaulting the young woman sexually?
- Will the Aadhaar card of all those who have listed themselves on a matrimony site after 2015 bear some mark saying that this person has been registered on one site already so that he cannot use the same to get registered on another site.
- With due respect, is the police entitled to arrest a gentleman who is in touch with a 30 women online? Unless he is taking undue advantage of them in any manner or seeking favors from them by making any false promises, is it a punishable offence?
- Since those at the helm of affairs in our country tend to believe that “background checks” over those registering themselves on matrimony sites will help bring don rate of crime against women, why do not they apply the same laws for all bus drivers (lets not forget Nirbhaya on 16 December) and cab operators in the country on a more urgent basis?
- If our worthy minister thinks that they can crack down on women haters and stalkers by asking matrimony sites to furnish an Aadhaar card, will they make it mandatory for the gazillions of dating sites as well later?
- Why would a person who has no intentions whatsoever of cheating on anyone want to share his/ her Aadhaar card details? What if the documents are downloaded and misused elsewhere? Will the government make sure that does not happen?
“If the Aadhaar card is made compulsory for people to enroll in matrimonial websites, we will have to comply but how many people have Aadhaar cards? The government has to make sure people have the cards before implementing such a rule,” said Anupam Mittal, founder and CEO of People Group which owns businesses such as Shaadi.com. “Also, it is not possible to understand the intent of people by looking at their documents alone,” he said.
Meanwhile, Nilanjan Roy, head (strategy), Times Business Solutions, who looks after SimplyMarry.com, had this to offer: “People are most likely to cheat about their height and salaries and Aadhaar doesn’t give you such details,” he said.”
Online matrimony sites are mere platforms where two people who might not have otherwise met discover each other. Checking the authenticity of the details furnished by the to the site owners does not fall within the purview of the latter. Those who go ahead with an online proposal have a lot more to check on their own level if they do decide to go ahead!
Kudos to our hugely talented minister for offering the Aadhaar card on matrimonial sites as the solution for crimes against women!