With India's demonetization, there have been many speculations as to whether the move was targeted towards Digital India or whether the move will lead to the digitization of Indian economy or is it the time now for digital economy and so on.
It might be soon that we will realize what the Government is really aiming at. While PM Modi has already announced on his twitter handle and on his "Maan Ki Baat" radio broadcast that people should accept more of digital transaction or payment methods, the Government has also started programmes on creating awareness and education on digital economy in many rural areas.
Now, a report from Economic Times reveals that soon the 12-digit Aadhaar number could replace all card transactions. Focusing on helping India become a cashless economy, the government is looking to strengthen the Aadhaar enabled transactions.
An Explicit Policy
The move has been initiated by National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog) which is a Government of India policy think-tank established by the Narendra Modi government to replace the Planning Commission.
So we might soon see the government coming out with an explicit policy that could discourage cash transactions in the country.
Transactions Could be Card-less and Pin-less
Commentating on the matter, Ajay Pandey, Director General of the UIDAI said that the Aadhaar-enabled transactions could be card-less and pin-less. This would further enable mobile Android and iOS phone users to digitally transact using their Aadhaar number and fingerprint/iris authentication.
He further added that this would require a multi-pronged strategy, which will include holding discussions with mobile manufacturers, merchants and banks. According to him, the government has already started working in mobilizing resources to help achieve this.
Inbuilt Iris or Thumb Identification System
NITI Aayog CEO, Amitabh Kant has also made a statement saying that the policy makers have asked mobile manufacturers if all the mobiles made in India should come with inbuilt iris or thumb identification system to help Aadhaar-enabled transactions.
Giving more disclosures on the matter, Kant conspicuously told that the government will be simultaneously creating a system of incentives/disincentives so that cash transactions would become more expensive and people will choose to pay digitally.
Continuation of Digital Transactions
The ultimate purpose of the government would be that it wants to put in place a proper system to continue digital transactions on a sustainable basis.
Concurrently, IT Secretary, Aruna Sundarajan has stated that the ministry has kept aside Rs 100 crore to encourage enrollment of merchants on to the digital platform to help push the drive to a digital economy.
She further disclosed that the IT department will be providing an incentive of Rs 100 for every merchant enrolled through over two lakh common service centres across India.
Additionally, she also added that the ministry would be undertaking a major outreach communication campaign starting from Monday to ensure that every segment of the population is enabled to use one or any other mode of digital payment.