'Charges on transactions must for fully digital India'

India cannot become fully digital if all transactions remain free of cost: RBI former exec director

The country cannot become fully digital if it continues to offer all transactions free of cost, said G Padmanabhan, former executive director of the Reserve Bank of India.

Speaking at a webinar organised by Electronic Payment and Services (EPS), a retail banking technology service provider, he said that for digital transactions to really zoom in this country, there is a need to provide convenience for customers.

"I belong to that category who believe that it is simply not possible to make India digital by offering all transactions free of cost," he said.

According to him, the development of payment infrastructure in the country is still in progress.

"In a country where the infrastructure development is not complete, who is going to come and put in the money," he said.

At the RBI, Padmanabhan was looking after the departments of information and technology, payment and settlement systems and foreign exchange.

He said that unless the onboarding process is simplified, the customers would be driven away from using digital transactions.

"This is a country unfortunately where we have the same set of rigorous KYC norms whether you are being onboarded for Rs 2,000 transaction or for a huge amount of transaction," Padmanabhan said.

He said the quick response (QR) code has a huge potential but it has not performed up to the mark so far.

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