India Posts Payments Bank (IPPB) is all set to roll out operations on a pan-India level from April this year, which will also include digital transactions.
The payments bank will leverage India Posts’ around 1.55 lakh post offices, almost 70% of which are in rural areas, to cover around 650 districts in the country. The bank will have multiple customer access points in all the districts to reach out to the un-banked. It will begin with around 3,500 personnel, most of which will be from the banking and related sectors.
“India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) Expansion Programme continues to make brisk progress and a nation-wide roll-out is scheduled beginning April 2018,” department of posts said in a statement.
IPPB will be providing the largest financial inclusion network in the country, covering both urban as well as rural hinterland with the ability to provide digital payment services at doorstep with the help of postmen and gramin dak sewaks (GDS), it added.
The bank will enable more than 17 crore active account-holders of post office savings bank to make interoperable digital payments including the benefit of NEFT, RTGS, UPI and bill payment services. Besides, it will enable acceptance of digital payments across post offices in the country in line with the digital payments initiative of the government.
In November 2014, the Department of Posts applied for a payments bank with the RBI and got the in-principle approval from the same in September 2015.
At present, IPPB is offering savings account up to a balance of Rs 1 lakh, along with digitally enabled payments and remittance services of all kinds between individuals. Going ahead, it will also offer current accounts and access to third party financial services like insurance, mutual funds, pension, credit products and forex.
Deloitte India has been roped in as a consultant for putting in place systems and procedures for setting up and running its affairs, while EIT Services India has been engaged as systems integrator to bring together hardware and software components and all sub-systems together and ensuring that these function harmoniously.
By the year-end, IPPB plans to equip all its postmen with smartphones to offer doorstep banking services.