New Delhi: The new digital payment mode, e-RUPI, launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday will ensure that the government’s monetary benefits directly reach citizens in a ‘leak-proof’ manner. “Today the country is giving a new dimension to digital governance. e-RUPI voucher is going to play a huge role in making DBT more effective in digital transactions in the country. This will help everyone in Targeted, Transparent and Leakage Free Delivery,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said.
The beneficiaries will get an electronic voucher or coupon that can be used without online banking, payment applications and other traditional payment modes. In other words, e-RUPI is a QR code or SMS string-based e-voucher. The digital coupons, similar to Sodexo vouchers, have been developed by the National Payments Corporation of India in collaboration with the Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and National Health Authority.
How will it work?
The government will send the voucher directly to the mobile number of the beneficiaries, instead of putting the cash in bank accounts. The mobile number and identity of the citizen will be verified first before sending e-RUPI coupons. “e-RUPI connects the sponsors of the services with the beneficiaries and service providers in a digital manner without any physical interface,” the Prime Minsiter’s Office said in a notification.
What are its benefits?
It is not related to any app or mobile banking. So anyone with any phone can access these electronic coupons. The user can redeem the SMS voucher at the service provider. The payment to the provider will be processed only when the transaction is complete. The prepaid nature of this payment ensures timely payment to the service provider without the involvement of an intermediary.
Where can it be used?
The government wants to use the e-RUPI payment mode to deliver the financial benefits under Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) schemes such as providing drugs and nutritional support under mother and child welfare schemes, TB eradication programmes, drugs & diagnostics under schemes like Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana, fertilizer subsidies, etc. The private sector can also use e-RUPI digital vouchers as part of their employee welfare and corporate social responsibility programmes, the notification added.
“Not only the government, if any general organisation or organisation wants to help someone in their treatment, in their education or for any other work, then they will be able to give e-RUPI instead of cash. This will ensure that the money given by him is used for the same work for which that amount has been given,” PM Modi added.
Banks using e-RUPI
There are 11 public and private sector banks that support this new digital payment mode. State Bank of India, ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, Punjab National Bank, Axis Bank and Bank of Baroda fully support e-RUPI vouchers. Both issuance and redemption of e-RUPI coupons are available at these banks.
Banks including Canara Bank, InsusInd Bank, Indian Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank and Union Bank of India can only issue e-RUPI coupons. Redeeming the digital voucher option is not available at these lenders.
“The concept of electronic vouchers takes forward this vision of Good Governance. It is expected to be a revolutionary initiative in the direction of ensuring a leak-proof delivery of welfare services,” the Centre said.