We don’t write letters anymore, we use email. We don’t use physical share certificates, we demat. There are myriad other ways we are going paperless, except when it comes to the certificates and documents we need as proofs of identity or qualifications.
You could try the DigiLocker, or a digital locker. It lets you store and share certified and digitally signed copies of any document.
Quite a few major banks, including ICICI Bank Ltd, Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd and Axis Bank Ltd have also partnered with DigiLocker, so that their customers can access it directly from the net-banking platform. DigiLocker is an initiative of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), and the government is pushing its use. The initiative by the banks is a step in this direction. Banks are currently offering this service at no charge.
What does it offer?
DigiLocker is a centralised system that allows you to store, sign and share your documents such as Permanent Account Number (PAN), voter ID, school and university certificates, in an electronic format. You get up to 1 gigabyte (GB) of online storage space free, to store these copies of documents.
Besides storage of documents, DigiLocker also provides the facility of e-signing, which allows you to digitally sign, and authenticate the copies of documents.
How does it work?
To access DigiLocker from your net-banking website, login to your account and you will see the DigiLocker icon on your account profile.
To apply for a DigiLocker account, you need to have an Aadhaar number and the mobile number that is registered in with the Aadhaar. After you successfully register, you can start uploading and accessing your documents.
DigiLocker can hold two kinds of document—issued documents and uploaded document. Issued documents are e-documents issued by various government agencies in electronic format directly from the original data source such as Ministry of Road Transport and Highways and the Central Board of Secondary Education. Whereas, uploaded documents are the scanned documents you upload.
If an issuers is registered with DigiLocker, you can get the documents directly from that issuer, if it has your document in electronic form.
To upload a scanned documents, click the ‘upload documents’ icon, select your file and upload it. To pull documents from a partner issuer, you have to click the ‘pull partner documents icon’, select the name of the organisation, select the document type and enter the required details.
Say you want to pull your university marksheet. You will have to provide the institution’s name, document type, academic year and roll number. You will get the link to your digital mark list, which you can then save in the DigiLocker. The digital certificate from the university can now be shared with anyone. The process of accessing DigiLocker through a net banking account can vary from bank to bank. Currently, there are close to 30 registered issuers.
If your bank does has not partnered with DigiLocker, you can also open a DigiLocker account directly from its official website: https://digilocker.gov.in/. The process of uploading and accessing documents if similar to the one from most banks’s sites.