Did Bill Gates Say India’s Digital ID Must Be Mandatory In US?!

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Did Bill Gates say that India’s digital ID must become mandatory in the United States?! Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : Bill Gates Says India’s Digital ID Must Become Mandatory In US!

People are sharing an article (archive) by The People’s Voice (formerly NewsPunch), which claimed or suggested that Bill Gates said that India’s digital ID must become mandatory in the United States!

Bill Gates Says India’s Digital ID Must Become Mandatory in America

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Truth : Bill Gates Did Not Say India’s Digital ID Must Become Mandatory In US!

This is yet another example of fake news created / promoted by The People’s Voice, and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : Bill Gates Never Said India’s Digital ID Must Implemented In US

Let me start by pointing out that Bill Gates never said that India’s digital ID must be implemented in the United States, never mind made “mandatory”.

If Bill Gates actually suggested making India’s digital ID mandatory in the United States, it would not only have been reported widely by the mainstream media, and lambasted by people who don’t like such ideas. Yet, there was no such report, not even some social media outrage.

That’s because that never happened. The People’s Voice article, unsurprisingly, offered no evidence to back up its “fact checked” claim.

The source of this nonsensical claim is a blog post by Bill Gates on his (upcoming) trip to India, called “India’s innovations are still changing the world“. Nowhere in that post does he mention implementing India’s digital ID, or making it mandatory in the United States.

Fact #2 : Aadhaar Is Not Mandatory In India

Aadhaar (आधार), India’s digital ID system, provides a 12-digit unique identity number based on the persons biometrics – 10 fingerprints, 2 iris prints, and a photo of the person’s face, as well as demographic data.

However, Aadhaar is not mandatory, and is an “opt-in” system, because it was developed to help provide targeted delivery of financial aid and other subsidies, benefits and services to the people of India.

In fact, the Supreme Court of India issued an interim order on 23 September 2023, that “no person should suffer for not getting Aadhaar“, and that the government cannot deny a service to a resident who does not possess Aadhaar, as it is voluntary and not mandatory.

Fact #3 : US Federalism Makes It Difficult For National ID

The United States of America is one of the few developed countries to not have a national identity card. It’s not for a lack of trying – there have been proposals to nationalise its ID cards.

Anyone, including Bill Gates, can call for a national identity card, whether digital or physical. So what? It’s not the first time anyone has suggested it, and it won’t be the last time either.

However, the United States was founded upon the idea of federalism, so attempts to create a national identity card have failed so far. As a result, Americans have to resort to using a number of documents to prove their identity or citizenship.

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Fact #4 : The People’s Voice Is Known For Fake News

The People’s Voice is the current name for NewsPunch, which possibly changed its name because its brand has been so thoroughly discredited after posting numerous shocking but fake stories.

Founded as Your News Wire in 2014, it was rebranded as NewsPunch in November 2018, before becoming The People’s Voice. A 2017 BuzzFeed report identified NewsPunch as the second-largest source of popular fake news on Facebook that year.

Its articles have been regularly debunked as fake news, so you should never share anything from NewsPunch / The People’s Voice.  Here are some of its fake stories that I fact checked earlier:

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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