INTEGRATION terms of decongesting crowded toll plazas and

INTEGRATION
OF PAYMENT SYSTEMS WITH THE ECONOMY:

The integration of the
payment system into the various facets of the economy can be facilitated and
accelerated using supportive/integrating technology. Supportive technology is
the binder technology that assists in the implementation of a parallel
technology by providing solution to parent problem.

 

1.     
TOLL
PAYMENT

One of the increasingly
popular payment methods at toll gates in India and a lot of developed nations
is ETC or Electronic Toll Collection.
This technology allows the user to fit a Radio Frequency Identification device
on the windscreen on the car and it helps in fast and near nonstop movement of
vehicles near such toll plazas. An online account is linked to the RFID number
which is recharged regularly using net banking/mobile banking and the amount
appropriate to the vehicle is deducted online. The technology is revolutionary
in terms of decongesting crowded toll plazas and decreasing the level of
pollution. Moreover, it reduces the need of monitoring and can help improve the
safety on roads.

The Government of India
in 2016-17 launched the FASTag
program to initiate the transition from cash to an ETC system.
Currently the technology is being used in 240+ toll plazas across National
Highways and although the program/feature is voluntary, the GoI is looking at
making it compulsory for all the vehicles. This advancement in toll payment
technology has helped boost the Government’s digital India vision. Earlier the
drivers had to pay using cash but with this technology, the ease of payment,
the convenience have significantly improved.

  

Payment
can be done via the following media:

·        
Net Banking (ICICI, SBI etc)

·        
Mobile Banking

·        
Online Payment Banks (PayTm)

This
initiative is a part of the Digital India program of the Central Government and
we can expect the Government to beef up and replicate this at a much faster
pace. The highlight of this technology isn’t just the ease of payment but also
the positive impact on the traffic system of India, that is bound to ease up.

 

LATEST TECHNOLOGY:

Despite
taking a stride towards an electronic toll collection system, India is still
behind countries like US which had started it back in 1989. US currently has
moved to a much advanced AET system (All Electronic Tolling) which employs an
E-Z Transponder that works on the similar payment principles as that of the
ETC. The AET requires the vehicle owner to link the device to an online account
which must be funded with enough money for toll plaza collections. The best
thing about the new technology is the fact that the vehicles don’t need to stop
or decrease their speed for toll collection. The overhead electronic mount,
on-road sensor and high resolution cameras allow automatic deduction of amount
from the account based on the number of axles of the vehicle (higher axles
vehicles i.e. buses/trucks pay more). In case a vehicle owner doesn’t get the
Transponder, the camera takes pictures of the license plate and sends the
bill/notice to the address associated with the number. The unmanned booths are
the next big thing in the toll payments and can be immensely helpful for a
country like India, which battles from immense traffic issues in its cities.

The
payment technology remains the same in case of AET:

·        
Online payment using internet banking

·        
Mobile banking

 

2.     
BILL
PAYMENT

The
current payment system in India is abreast with the latest technology and
developments. Worldwide, the developed economies have been integrated with
mobile banking, internet banking and debt/credit cards. Developed nations in
Europe and the US have an increasing population of Contactless cards. Such
cards are already in use in India and are gaining popularity.

The
list of current methods of non cash payment systems in India are:

·        
Point of sales

·        
Credit/Debit cards

·        
Contactless cards

·        
Wallets(Oxigen,Paytm)

·        
UPIs(BHIM)

·        
Net Banking

·        
Mobile Banking Apps

·        
Payment Banks including IPPB

The
Indian payment situation is bound to see improvement with the rise of Payment
Banks like Paytm, Airtel and the GoI’s own IPPB. With ease of payment and
increasing convenience, users are more likely to switch to non-cash medium
facilitated by mobile banking services and UPIs like BHIM.

Apart
from Payment Banks, UPIs are also a powerful instrument in this endeavour as
they offer a common platform for multiple bank accounts. With most of the
services including stores, restaurants and government services allowing
online/mobile payments, citizens are slowly transitioning towards it.

 

3.     
UNORGANIZED
SECTOR AND AGRICULTURE

The
informal sectors are slowly capturing the attention of technocrats as they are
working towards finding indigenous solutions to India’s problems. Multiple
pilot projects are being developed to provide ease to the nation’s farmers and
workers.

For
example, project like LOOP have been implemented in belts of Bihar which allow
the farmers to find vendors online. These apps help the aggregators and the
farmers locate the vendors, the market, scope of sales and finally, help them
track the sales. Currently, the aggregators collect the produce and come back
with the earned money, saving the time and effort of the farmers. With a bit of
more intervention and integration, payment can be done online reducing
exploitation of farmers and thus increasing the prosperity of the people. 

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