Sunday, 28 August 2011

Mission - UID

Earlier today, I was at. Central Bank to apply for the Unique Identity Card, a new government initiative that wants all Indian citizens to have this card. So anyway, we were the first people there.. (literally) .. We got there even before the bank itself had opened.. and got to see the not-so-very rare sight of a sleeping security guard, he was on this chair with his cap on his face echoing his snores...

Few minutes later, hearing the sound of my family and I talking, he wakes up from his dream of being the loudest at snoring. He gets up all confused and dazed. He walks towards the rear end of the building and pours cold water over his head just in time before the manager arrived in a posh four-wheeler. The manager took a look at my grandfather and immediately recognized him. My grandfather actually had worked at Central Bank,  and knew some of the people still after all these years.

"How are you sir!" said the manager as he approached us. "Good to see you" he said... And granddad told him the reason we were here and all and then the manager told us that there is another room for senior citizens  or ex workers of the bank and their family where they could get their work done faster and better. So we were let into the back entrance like VIPs! .. (now I know how those politicians are treated!) ..

We headed upstairs to the second floor and were taken into this room which had this big table in the middle,.. which kinda was in an elliptical shape, with chairs on either side and the table itself filling up almost half of the room. There was a huge 40" LG flat-screen HD ready TV there. I wonder why though. ..(Well, I guess it does get boring too in the banks.) ..  But anyway, the TV seemed kind of out of the ordinary. My mom said it may be required for those video conferencing things, but that fails to explain the presence of a Tata Sky set top box..

Two women enter the room and switch on their 200BC computers also containing the "Windows Genuine Advantage" pop up on the Windows XP desktop. The reason why I say '200BC' is because those computers were like running on Pentium 1? maybe less.. from the looks of it, it looked like the second model after ENIAC...  and then my eyes rolled over to the high-tech TV again.. .. Bizarre..

So anyway, they setup the camera which is hooked onto this computer screen that is facing towards you. .. (Thank god atleast the camera was made somewhere in the 21st century!) ..  They then setup the finger print scanner beside the computer, and finally an eye scanner.. It's supposed to scan your retina or something. So basically, they needed to take a photo of yours, then your finger print, your retina scan, and a few documents.. Not much a big of a deal right? ... That's what I thought so too... and I was wrong..

And thus it began...

Several minutes passed by and two women walked into the room with their Marathi conversation, paused, glanced at us, turned back to each other, and went back to their chit-chat. Few minutes later they told us that everything was ready and that the first person could now come. I walked up.
Aim- Getting the retina scan done.
Requirements- Retina scanner, your eyes popping out wide.
Execution- "Now open your eyes wide and hold the retina scanner up to your eyes and look into it" said one of the ladies. Now this retina scanner was like a binocular. I had to hold it exactly one inch away from my eye, not shake and open my eyes wide. Or as the lady said, " Grow your eyes " ... ... ... so I 'grew my eyes' wide and looked like a loony. Now, I had to wait for the scanner to take that retina picture the moment it detects my retina. And my eyes were wide open and 'growing' and trust me, keeping your eyes open like that and not blinking for more than 15 seconds, makes your eyes water a little. And just when things were bad already for my eyes, suddenly, a flash of a huge white light comes out from the right side of the binocular almost temporarily blinding me... As I come around they said that I had blinked and so the picture couldn't be taken. OMG!. Now I had to grow my eyes again and become blind.. this time, thankfully the moment I brought the funny looking binocular near my eyes, it automatically beeped and they said it was done.. (I take the beep as what I would have liked to said).. .. . But then what was all that with the flash and forcefully popping my eyes out!!?
Conclusion- Growing your eyes may lead to temporary blindness..

- Getting your fingerprint scan.
Requirements- Fingerprint Scanner, a lot of strength in the thumbs.
Execution- A damp cloth is used to wipe your thumb so that any dirt on the finger is removed before taking the scan. Now I place both my moist thumbs on the scanner and a green light goes below it horizontally from left to right and then right to left. Two beeps sound from it in a low tone. "Sir please apply more pressure" says the lady. So I do as told. But now, when I apply pressure, my thumbs are moist, and the surface below is smooth and slightly moist too.. (get it?..) Yeeaap! thumbs slid right across to the next end of the scanner and went down onto the table almost pushing the scanner off the table...!  This happened all too quickly! ... "Sir the objective here isn't to break it" she said. So we take it again. This time, I think the machine realized that this wasn't any other person taking a fingerprint scan and decided to behave itself. In the next try I put down my fingers with the same pressure you'd use to press a feather-touch button.. The green light gets below my thumbs and beeps and they say the job was complete and the machine could live to do another scan...
- One hard hit on the head can surely crack things up!

- Getting your monkey face captured on camera.
Requirements- A GOOD PHOTOGRAPHER WHO KNOWS WHEN NOT TO CLICK! ... , your loony face,.. .. .. and you not sneezing...
Execution- "Now sir please sit still and rest your back against the wall" said the lady... and I was wearing my new black Tshirt and resting behind a white wall... :) ... aren't I lucky! ...  anyway she hooks the camera onto the screen and faces it towards me. "Okay sir, now I shall click your pictu....." <!!!AACHHHOOO!!!> and I sneezed.. .. !   .. and my sneeze seemed to have echoed in the empty room therefore sounding even more thundering.. and in all that, my sneeze was soo unexpected, (even by me!) it really gave all of us the goosebumps.. and the lady who was going to take the photograph, was soo shocked by the sneeze that she clutched her palm tight.. right when it was on the mouse's left click button.. yeah... guess the picture that turned out... ...
They actually caught me in the middle of a sneeze!! Seriously, the picture was hilarious..! Try this - take your finger and use it to lift the tip of your nose up.. squint your eyes, and drop your lower jaw... ... .. Go look in a mirror... Try hard not to die by laughing...
That was how I was looking...
And there was no way I was going to allow that to be put up on the card...! So we definitely took another picture.. This time, it came out better.. Well, not as I had expected, but definitely better than the first time...
Conclusion- Sneezing while taking your picture..., BAD IDEA. .... And picture taken, BAD LUCK..

But anyway after all that we finally managed to get the work done.


- Getting your Unique Identity Card done.. GOOD... Getting it done from Central Bank, OKAY!, Getting it done by the same lady, RUN!!!