Mumbai: The Reserve Bank is planning to impose a fee on paper cheque payments to encourage customers to switch to electronic mode for transferring funds.
The charge on payments made through paper-based cheques should be borne by the customers, a study group of the central bank suggested in a report on “Migration of paper-based funds movement to electronic funds transfers”.
RBI posted the report on its website on 20 April for public comments, which would accepted till 15 May.
The report also suggested that customers should not be allowed to pay credit card dues and mobile bills through cheques instead they be asked to compulsorily pay bills for online transactions through electronic mode.
Suggesting that electronic fund transfers should be made cheaper than paper mode payments, the report said: “To begin with, ECS-based transactions should be made free for three years” and legal protection be made available to such transfers.
The report also recommended that government should be encouraged to migrate to electronic-based receipts and payments within three years and the progress should be reviewed every six months by the RBI.
To improve transactions at the National Stock Exchange and Bombay Stock Exchange, the group suggested that necessary technical framework should be put in place in consultation with SEBI to encourage transactions through Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS).
It further recommended that RBI may form a working group of all stakeholders to facilitate migration to electronic transactions.
Referring to high value transactions, the group recommended that transfers exceeding Rs 10 crore should be settled through the RTGS system, while others through National Electronic Funds Transfer (NEFT) system.
It further suggested that RBI should make it mandatory for all banks to undertake inter-bank transactions through RTGS within six months.