When Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced demonetisation to fight black money, a valid criticism was that the black money is hoarded more in immovable property than cash. The government, however, has been saying that demonetisation was one step in fight against black money and more such steps would come.
Now the next big step against black money is round the corner, and this time it’s immovable property that’s on target. For the first time, a Union Cabinet minister has indicated that Aadhaar linkage with property transactions would be made mandatory.
Union Housing Minister Hardeep Puri has said that he has no doubt the linkage would happen. Speaking to Nayantara Rai of ET NOW, Puri said such a move would go a long way in sucking out black money from real estate and also help in crackdown on benami properties. “Seeding Aadhaar to property transaction is a great idea but I’m not going to make an announcement on that. We are already linking Aadhaar to bank accounts, etc, and we can take some additional steps for property market also,” he said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has indicated several times that the government would crack down on benami property. Aadhaar linkage could be one part of that drive.
When asked if seeding Aadhaar with property is a logical conclusion of the government’s drive to push Aadhaar to bring transparency in economy, Puri said, “Absolutely, that’s the way it’s heading anyways. I have no doubt that it will happen.”
However, according to Puri, while no one can absolutely enforce that a transaction between two individuals is completely transparent, large-value transactions such as property and air tickets could definitely be monitored.
“There is no economy in the world that is entirely cashless. However, people do not feel the need of carrying large wads of cash around in economies that have stable system. That’s the way we are heading,” he said.
Mandatory Aadhaar linkage to innumerable government schemes and for identification has generated a lot of debate. Several petitions against the Aadhaar linkage are being heard in the court.