process begins for those sans IDs
By N.Dilshath Banu
Grama niladharis throughout the country have been directed to ensure
that all persons eligible for a National Identity Card be issued
with required application forms, Department of Registration of Persons
Commissioner H.K Geethasena said.
forms which are being distributed will be collected on February
18 and 19 by the grama niladhari who will visit the homes, he said.
“The grama niladharis are due to complete the distribution
of applications forms before this coming Friday. If anyone couldn’t
get an application form, he can get one from the grama niladhari,”
Mr. Geethasena said.
the completed application forms are collected by the grama niladharis
they have to be handed over to the Divisional Secretary by February
24 and should reach the Department of Registration of Persons before
March 3. The Department is expected to process the application forms
within a month, depending on the number of applications received
and send the IDs to the respective Divisional Secretariats. From
the Divisional Secretariat the IDs will go to the respective grama
niladharis from whom the people will have to get them.
to the Department of Registration of Persons nearly 2 million people
don’t have IDs. Of this number, it is estimated that only
1.5 million people will have the appropriate documents to get their
do not wish to get their IDs as they are old and live in remote
villages. They lack motivation to apply for an ID, thinking that
they may not need one, ” Mr Geethasena said.
cannot issue IDs without supporting birth certificates and some
people whose IDs are pending are not in a position to produce their
birth certificates,” he said.
around 40,000 cards are processed per month with 2500 to 3000 processed
in a day. Nearly 250 cards will be issued in the same day service.
Since the beginning of this month, the number of people applying
for this service has increased.
Geethasena said plans are underway to computerize the process of
issuing IDs. “If we have a computerized system, we can process
15,000 cards per day. In the past we tried this system, but we couldn’t
continue it as changing policies of Governments made it difficult
to continue it,” he said.
Deputy Elections Commissioner W.P. Sumanasiri said though the National
ID was an important document for voting at elections, it was not
Elections Commissioner could make it compulsory only after getting
confirmation from the Registrations of the Persons Commissioner
and the Pradeshiya Sabhas that every eligible person has got his/her
ID. Until then, people can produce any other kind of identification
card if necessary,” Mr. Sumanasiri said.