ISLAMABAD - After launch of chip-based smart national identity card (SNIC) for adult population of Pakistan, the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) is all set to issue the same smart card for children under the age of 18.

The chip-based cards will be distinguished from child registration certificate (CRC), as it will become an “entitlement document” with multiple facilities. The launch of smart identity card is to extend an experience of hi-tech security solution for the protection of juveniles’ identity, a spokesperson of the authority said.

Chairman NADRA Tariq Malik said through a press statement that the chip-based smart identity card for the children would offer multidimensional usage and services including health, educational, social and financial programmes.

The new card for children shall be capable of holding applications and data from the health, education and social sector such as vaccination records, academic records and polio registrations, he added.

Malik said the introduction of a smart identity card would be beneficial for both the citizens and the Government of Pakistan not only as an identity document but also as a medium of storing data from the health, education and social sector on the chip. He said, “The card will be clearly marked as valid for “under 18” till the child’s date of 18th birthday and shall incorporate all features of a smart NIC for citizens including photograph, name, father’s name, date of birth and address.

He further said that biometrics would be captured for children over the age of 15 as per the specified accepted age of juvenile biometrics for the automated fingerprint identification system (AFIS). Such child smart card carrying biometric data shall be valid beyond the age of 18 as smart CNICs also.

Malik said that like smart identity card this card would also be the safest and most secure card because it could not be replicated or forged. He said a chip would be fitted into the card which would help the government to provide all out facilities like health and education record, life insurance and financial assistance in case of calamity to this specific segment of society.

The NADRA currently issues child registration certificate (CRC) for registration of children under the age of 18. The CRC is printed on A4 sized secure paper holding the child’s name, gender and date of birth. There is no picture of the child on the CRC. However, the new smart card will carry child’s picture with biometric record. This card is not mandatory. CRC (B-Form) shall remain valid and NADRA shall continue to issue the same as per registration policy in vogue. “NADRA is empowering government with a medium to transform the country into a welfare state by launching multi-faced smart card platform”, said Tariq Malik.