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The payment systems revolution: India’s story
This paper discusses the evolution in digital payment systems in India. It describes how the role of cash in the country has declined since the mid-1980s following the Reserve Bank of India’s introduction of magnetic ink character recognition technology for cheque clearing. The paper shows how the Reserve Bank of India has continued to drive the development of technology-based payment systems, not only by introducing real-time gross settlement and the National Electronic Funds Transfer system, but also by establishing exclusive institutions for retail payments, such as the National Payments Corporation of India. The paper also discusses the steps taken to increase the use of digital payment systems throughout the country.
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N.V. Narendra Kumar is an assistant professor at the Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology, where he conducts research into the design, modelling, analysis and development of secure computer systems. He is currently working on building a blockchain platform and its uses in banking, financial services and insurance. He has MS and PhD degrees in computer science from the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, and is a recipient of the Microsoft Research India Rising Star Award.
Abhishek Thakur is an assistant professor at the Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology, where he works on open source technologies and FinTech collaboration. His research interests include multimedia communications, financial inclusion and information and communication technologies for rural deployments. His career spans more than 20 years, split across industry and academia, and he has executed multiple global projects for both product and services-based IT organisations.
G. Raghuraj is a senior domain expert at the Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology, where he contributes to the institute’s structured financial messaging system and upgrades to the real-time gross settlement system, as well as research into communication networks, digital signatures and certifying authorities. He has worked in various areas and capacities at the Reserve Bank of India, and is a former Inspector of Central Excise.
S. Lalit Mohan is a senior domain expert at the Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology. His research interests include banking technology, cloud computing, cyber security and information retrieval/extraction. He was involved in the establishment of the Indian Banking Community Cloud and guided the initiative to move the payment systems of smaller banks to the Community Cloud. He is currently investigating how banking and financial services can leverage 5G technology.