Article By Conor Maloney
Two local governments in West Bengal, India are integrating the application for birth certificates on a blockchain system developed by Lynked.world, a blockchain app company based in the Netherlands.
Bankura Municipal Corporation and Durgapur Municipal Corporation will be using blockchain tech to handle administrative operations such as processing requests and verifying legal identities to make processes like applications for legal documents such as birth certificates more streamlined.
Lynked World CEO and Founder Arun Kumar cited the need for an overhaul of the “cumbersome” systems currently being used for these processes, saying government agencies are still a position where they need citizens standing in front of an agent with their ID in hand to access basic services.
Kumar told CCN that the platform is ready for launch and that both West Bengal municipalities will be able to issue birth certs and other legal documents and other certificates as early as September 2018, with 1 million birth certs expected to be placed on blockchain by the end of the year.
“These Birth and other certificates would be digitally authenticated by issuing authorities (municipalities) and that authentication will be stored on blockchain which facilitates verification of these documents by any third party organization to whom owners provide access.
Basically Blockchain would be used to write the hash value of certificate together with owner of certificate and who issued it for the authentication and verification.”
The LYNK token will be the native token of the platform and enable citizens to make applications. The company broadly specializes in ID verification via its app which includes a digital wallet for storing personal information contained in documents like passports, medical records, academic degrees, and driver’s licenses which can be securely verified on blockchain technology. A QR code is used to quickly connect users to their legal records stored on the blockchain network, greatly reducing the amount of time and money that needs to be spent on basic ID verification.
India has embraced blockchain technology by establishing a blockchain district in the country of 1.3 billion people and pledging to provide regulatory support for companies and startups. The government has also stated its intention to use blockchain technology to increase transparency and reduce government corruption.
Meanwhile, other nations have implemented blockchain ID verification pilot programs in areas like voting from abroad in the US, verifying academic degrees in Australia, and government auditing in China.
The initiative to streamline birth cert applications and put citizen birth records on the blockchain in India is the latest in a series of important steps in adoption that continue to demonstrate the usefulness of the new technology. While it’s arguably too soon to say whether the systems will be ultimately successful, the intercontinental adoption is a strong vote of confidence in DLT as groundbreaking innovation continues to disrupt high-level government systems and pave the way for growth in the sector.
Featured image from Shutterstock.