Driven by the rapid increase in digital payments, the Indian government has initiated e-RUPI, a new digital pre-paid voucher that combines rupee and United Payments Interface (UPI) — the country’s primary payment platform — according to a Tuesday (Aug 3) report from Tech In Asia.
Underlining the growing need for digital payment capabilities, India’s UPI processed a record-breaking 3.24 billion transactions in July. That marked a whopping 15.7 percent spike from June, during which UPI processed 2.8 billion transactions. In addition, the Immediate Payments Service (IMPS), which also carries out digital payments under the National Payments Corporation of India (NCPI), processed 349.76 million transactions in July – a 15 percent increase.
According to the PYMNTS report, experts have said the pandemic has accelerated the switch to digital payments by about five to 10 years in India.
In terms of India’s new digital payment solution, e-RUPI provides contact-free, easy-to-use, one-time payment solutions redeemable via pre-paid voucher. The online payment tool can be used at participating merchants without a card, digital payments app or internet banking access, according to the NPCI.
The e-RUPI voucher would be shared with intended persons to cover a specific purchase or activity. Organizations or the government would make funds available via text message or QR code. Using e-RUPI involves a two-step verification and redemption process, which is said to be faster and more reliable since the needed amount for purchases is already housed in the voucher.
To date, e-RUPI has 11 issuing banks in India.
India’s payment companies have benefited from the recent boom in digital payments. Pine Labs, which last month raised $315 million and boosted its valuation to $3.5 billion, offers merchant solutions for in-store and doorstep payments and BNPL, as well as online payments and pre-paid issuance.