Every time you change your bank, you have to change your bank account too, which means a new account number. But no longer now. If all goes well, just like your mobile number, you will soon be able to have your old bank account number even if you change your bank.
Speaking at an event on Tuesday, Reserve Bank Deputy Governor S S Mundra batted for the introduction of bank account portability in India, and said that with the technological advancements in the payment system, account number portability has come within the realms of possibility.
The RBI Deputy Governor had talked about the bank account portability a few years ago too. The idea didn’t work then. However, its time seems to have come now. “Bank then the concept might have appeared somewhat abstract, but with technological advancements in the field of payment system such as UPI, etc, coupled with massive enrolment under Aadhaar and their linkage to individual bank accounts, it has come within the realm of possibility,” Mundra said, as per an Indian Express news report.
How will it benefit account holders?
If account number portability becomes a reality, sooner or later, it will provide relief to a large number of account holders who want to shift their accounts to another bank for some reasons, like if they are not satisfied with the services of the current bank or they think that their charges are high, but are unable to do that because they don’t want their account number to change. It will also help those people who keep changing their accounts for one reason or another, like in case of a job change or transfer from one city to another.
“If allowed it will a boon for Indians. The banking account portability, much like mobile number portability, will allow us to switch to other banks, if dissatisfied. This will increase the competition among banks and may lead to banks cutting cost in order to retain customers,” says Jitendra P S Solanki, CFP & Planner For Special Needs Member Families.
However, there are hurdles to it, especially with the IT infrastructure. “With banks having different digit account numbers, the task will require large IT infrastructure to bring portability. Banks may not be ready for this. Already a few banks have shown resistance to this until some uniform account number is implemented. But there is other fear among banks, which is the frequent movement of their customers, which may increase the cost for banking services. Will have to wait for the RBI guidelines on portability to see what it will include and how it will address both side interests,” adds Solanki.