The government has instructed banks to enable internet banking across all accounts by March 31 and mandatorily link them to the Aadhaar number to facilitate digital payments and online transactions. The measure has been approved at the “highest levels” in the government, and is aimed at facilitating digital payments across the banking system.
“This measure will further enable the rapidly-evolving digital payments setup in the country and will help add in a new set of consumers to the world of online transactions,” IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad told TOI here. The ministry has been coordinating efforts to digitise transactions and is a nodal point for several initiatives in this direction, including ensuring digital safety and putting in place cyber security measures.
Prasad chaired a review meeting on the growth and proliferation of digital payments, and also the various issues associated with the measure. “These were focused around looking at regulatory and monetary framework related to digital transactions”.
“Banks have been requested to get Aadhaar on board by March 31. This would mean that the bank account is ceded to Aadhaar that will enable easier digital transactions,” Prasad said.
Top officials in the IT ministry said that around 35% of existing bank accounts do not have linkages to Aadhaar, which could be an obstacle in aligning them to online transactions and digital payments applications. “If net banking is not allowed, some of the applications may not be able to make digital transactions,” an official said.