13 April, New Delhi
One would now be able to make digital payments without having a mobile phone, Internet connection, debit or credit card as Prime Minister Narendra Modi would on Friday release BHIM-Adhar interface enabling digital payments using biometric data.
The new interface would be launched in Nagpur during the 126th birth anniversary celebrations of Bhim Rao Ambedkar.
A statement issued by the NITI Aayog said that the BHIM-Adhaar merchant interface would pave the way for making digital payments on the Aadhaar platform using biometric data like thumb imprint on a merchant’s biometric enabled device.
“Any citizen without access to smart phones, Internet, debit or credit cards will be able to transact digitally through the BHIM-Aadhaar platform, thus realizing Ambedkar’s vision of social and financial empowerment for all,” the statement said.
It added that 27 major banks were already on board with around three lakh merchants so that they can start accepting payments using BHIM-Aadhaar.
During the event, Modi would also launch two new initiatives to push digital payments – cash back and referral bonus schemes – with an outlay of Rs 495 crore for a period of six months.
“Under the referral bonus scheme, both the existing user who refers BHIM (Bharat Interface for Money) and the new user who adopts BHIM would get a cash bonus credited directly to their account.
“Under the cashback scheme, the merchants will get a cashback on every transaction using BHIM,” the statement added.
CEO NITI Aayog Amitabh Kant said that the launch of BHIM-Aadhaar App and the launch of the two schemes – cashback and referral schemes – would provide a “major impetus to the digital payment revolution in India”.
During the event, the Prime Minister would also declare about 75 townships going “less-cash” where the deployment of payment acceptance infrastructure is complete and all the families are covered under training programs.
“Only those townships which have reported more than 80 per cent of the total number of transactions being done through digital modes of payments during the review period are included in this list,” the government said.
These townships are likely to generate over 1.5 lakh digital transactions every day thereby leading to about 5.5 crore digital transactions in a year, it added.
During the event, Modi would also felicitate the winners of the mega draw of the two major incentive schemes to promote digital payments – Lucky Grahak Yojana for customers and Digidhan Vyapaar Yojana for traders.
Modi had in December 2016 announced lucky draw schemes for people who use digital payment methods including e-banking, mobile banking and e-wallets.
He had announced that apart from regular prizes, one big bumper draw would be held on the occasion of Ambedkar Jayanti in which the winning price would be in crores.
Later same month, he launched BHIM app, an Aadhaar-based mobile payment application to promote and make digital transactions easier.