We refer to the unwise move of Reserve Bank of India to “disincentivise” the use of cheques in India. RBI has released a discussion paper in this regard and invited public comments before February 28, 2013. (comments may be submitted by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org) There is an urgent need for public to respond quickly and oppose this move of RBI since it is anti consumer.
Last year, in UK there was similar discussion triggered by the “Payments Council” which mooted a proposal to stop the usage of cheques by 2018. There was a huge opposition to the move from the public and the Banker withdrew the proposal.
As reported in telegraph, UK the Payment council said “all work to prepare for closing cheque clearing has stopped… Payments Council members will continue to provide customers with cheques for as long as they are needed”.
Mark Hoban, the Financial Secretary to the Treasury, said cheques would not be scrapped until “a suitable alternative is found”. He went on to add I am glad that the Payments Council have listened to what we and others have said about the future of the cheque.
“This is a victory for those who continue to rely on this trusted form of payment – including charities, the elderly and small businesses.It would have been irresponsible for banks to abolish the cheque before a credible and coherent alternative had been developed.”
He also stated He said: “Banks must now stop discouraging customers from using cheques. I remain concerned that the Payments Council, an industry-dominated body with no proper accountability, holds the future of cheques in its hands.”
the Treasury Select Committee also stated that the industry-dominated Payments Council should no longer have the unfettered power to decide the future of cheques, or other payment methods that directly affect millions of people in its report published on 24 August 2011.
Now the situation in India is similar to what was the situation in UK last year. It is imperative that RBI realizes its responsibilities to the public and withdraw the discussion paper immediately with an assurance that this will not be brought up again through the back door.
Naavi urges informed politicians such as Mr Rajiv Chandrashekar to take up the cause of the common man and ensure that the attention of the Finance Ministry is drawn to the issue.
While Naavi will send a copy of his representation to some of the MPs, readers may on their own bring this to the knowledge of relevant MPs so that it can be considered at the level of the Central Government and the RBI Governor.