New Delhi: The government appointed Ajay Bhushan Pandey as the chief executive officer of Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), the organization behind the Aadhaar.

Aadhaar is a 12 digit unique number, linked with an individual’s demographic and biometric information, which serves as an authentication tool throughout India.

The appointments committee of the cabinet approved the elevation with effect from 12th July.

Pandey, a 1984 batch Indian Administrative Service officer of Maharashtra cadre, has been serving as director general of the organization since August 2015.

UIDAI was founded in 2009 under the previous United Progressive Alliance regime with former Infosys CEO Nandan Nilekani as its chairman, who resigned in 2014 to take part in the general elections.

As of 15 July, about 102 crore Aadhaar IDs have been generated.

The appointment holds significance as Aadhaar is the centrepiece of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Digital India programme launched last year.

The government has been trying to link many of its major development and subsidy schemes with Aadhaar to reduce leakage and duplication.

Under Pandey, UIDAI had been working on enrolling children in the Aadhaar ecosystem, who can then be linked to various development schemes.

Under his tenure, UIDAI will also have to deal with the legal cases involving privacy and parliamentary issues that Aadhaar has been embroiled in.

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