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POLICY & REGULATIONS

Modi launches 81 less cash townships across 12 states under Niti Aayog
Monday, 17 April, 2017, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Our Bureau, New Delhi
A total of 81 townships, spanning twelve states and having a population of two lakh each, were launched as cashless/less cash townships by prime ministerNarendra Modi in Nagpur recently. They were facilitated to become cashless/less cash townships by Gujarat Narmada Valley Fertilisers and Chemicals Ltd under the auspices of Niti Aayog.

They include townships of central public sector companies like the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), Indian Oil, NTPC, Steel Authority of India Ltd (SAIL), Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL), National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC), Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Border Security Force (BSF) and Police Lines and private sector townships like Reliance, Essar, Adani, Aditya Birla and Welspun spread across states like Delhi, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Bihar and Chhattisgarh.

They are collectivelydoing about 2.5 lakhtransactions per day, which translates to approximately nine croretransactions in a year.

The GNFC township in Bharuch is India’s first 100 per cent cashless township. Appreciating GNFC’s initiative and model of cashless township, NITI Aayog advised all the ministries and chairpersons and managing directors (CMDs) of the 300-plus central public sector units (PSUs) to adopt the GNFC model and replicate it. While Gujarat has 55 other cashless/less cash townships, the other 11 states, between them, have 25.  

“This initiative is aligned with the prime minister’svision for a cashless society.The trendsthat have emerged from PwC’s study on Impact Assessment of GNFC’s cashless initiative clearly show that going cashless is a step in the right direction for our country due to the significant socio-economic benefits,” said Rajiv Kumar Gupta, managing director, GNFC Ltd.

“This initiative offers financial inclusion, cashless as a lifestyle, better parental control, women empowerment and social upliftment using technology,” he said.

As per the PwC study of GNFC’s cashless initiatives, for over 96 per cent of farmers, cashless resulted in cost savings arising from fewer trips to fertiliser shops and discounts on cashless transactions.

Electronic transactions resulted in better money management for over 90 per cent of the farmers. They felt more empowered. Over 94 per cent of them preferred cashless transactions over cash transactions, and for over 63 per cent of them reliance on cash has dramatically reduced.

It further found that 92.3 per cent of the households believed there was a significant reduction in the use of cash, resulting in more convenience when transacting for daily activities.
Going cashless had become an effective tool for parents to have control over their child’s expenses. Around 98 per cent of households said they saved time doing cashless transactions.

An estimated 87 per cent of fertiliser retailers reported a rise in their total revenues, revenue per transaction and total transactions as per this study.

GNFC’s timely cashless initiative has resulted in an increased market share and geographic reach, as farmers from far-flung places flocked to its outlets.

With 100 per cent township retailers accepting digital payments, the cash handling improved, and e-wallets have further resulted in reduced transaction costs.

“This is just the beginning of a new era, the cashless era, and GNFC is on course to become the beacon of light for the cashless economy. GNFC’s deployment model is ready to be emulated across more townships in India to promote and adopt digital payments,” added Gupta.
 
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