First it was compulsory to have an Aadhar card to get gas subsidy, then to get a phone connection and then to get cremated. Now you need an Aadhar to give birth. The applications of the Aadhar identity card has vastly multiplied since its introduction. Vowing it to function like a social security card, the government pushed it to the masses saying it will make life easier with its 10-digit number. But this flexible ID card system seems to have become not so flexible during crisis. A Gurgaon woman was forced to give birth outside the emergency ward of a civil hospital after she was denied admission for not carrying her Aadhar card.
When the labour pain hit 25-year-old Munni Kewat, her family promptly took her to the hospital. After being directed to the labour ward from the casualty ward, Kewat was denied any service as she did not carry her physical Aadhaar card. While her husband, Arun Kewat offered to give the Aadhaar number, the staff refused unless a physical copy was provided. "A lady doctor and some nurses present at the labour ward demanded a hard copy of the Aadhaar card and said that she would be admitted only on presenting the card. I asked my relatives to stay with my wife and went to get a printout of the card," he said.
When the incident got noticed by the authorities, the Gurgaon Chief Medical Officer Dr BK Rajora announced suspension of a doctor and a nurse while investigating if any other member of the staff was involved.
Kewat’s ordeal ended only after she had given birth on the floor and there was blood all over. The nurses and doctors finally took notice and gave assistance to her new born.
The fact that Kewat had to face such a situation despite having an Aadhaar card proves just how flexible the system has become since its introduction.