The only thing we recall in the wake of hearing ‘Kaun Banega Crorepati’ is a famous reality show hosted by Mr. Amitabh Bacchan. Wont it be suprising if I say you can likewise be a “Crorepati” by ‘being cashless’? Yes …it is Modi government who started the scheme “ Kaun Banega Crorepati” to boost the cashless transactions in our country. Financial experts are considering it to be a noteworthy step taken towards cashless economy. Under this scheme, 15,000 winners will be awarded daily for 100 days, starting from December 25, with Rs 1,000 each. Besides, there will be a Mega award on April 14, 2017 with cash prize of 1 crore, 50 lakh and 25 lakh for consumers for all transactions between November 8 and April 13.
Demonetisation drive which was earlier started with a motive of eradication of corruption and blackmoney has now changed its track towards ‘cashless society’. After the announcement of ‘ cashless economy ‘ , we were so enthused by the decision taken that we may have neglected some facts which are need to be overlooked before switching to cashless transactions .We never consider ‘cold facts’ , details of implementation and execution while judging the success of a plan or initiative . Battered by the political class that never cared, just good intentions, a bit of initiative and ideas are enough for people like us.
Are We ‘Potentially Prepared’?
Going cashless is truly an extraordinary thought yet dreaming of a cashless economy will be a bit over ambitious. For people like us it seems really easy as we have access to android phones, internet and other things. But what about people who do not have frequent access to internet or even android phones? What if there is no network or internet access? A recent report from Assocham –Deloitte joint study reveals that about 950 million people do not have access to internet. This implies that 76% of the people cannot do online money exchanges which is the simplest way of cashless transactions. How you are supposed to make India ‘cashless’ when such a large section is deprived of the basic requirement of cashless economy?
The another way of payment is by your Aadhar number. You can make payments by affiliating your bank account with Aadhar number. This AEPS ( Aadhar Enabled Payment System) too have a flaw that it needs a machine called Micro ATM which has network issues in remote regions. Beggars and daily wage workers will suffer most by this choice of ‘cashless society’. Just think about beggars, a person who cannot be proved as a citizen of India, how would he be able to make cashless payments by using android phone or even Aadhar card? Many questions like this can raised over the current situation of our nation and this ‘Cashless’ drive.
Venezuela is experiencing a same transition phase as India, they have demonetised their highest currency , a 100 bolivar note to fight against terrorism and counterfeiting. One of the higher official of Venezuela ministry when asked about the option of cashless transactions, he denied the possibility by stating the fact that cyber security departments of Venezuela is not in a condition to handle increased online transactions and switching to online transactions may lead to cyber crisis. Now the question here is , Whether this ‘cashless’ initiative started in our country was a well-planned decision or just another endeavour to cover the washout of demonetisation? Have we considered the fact that cyber-crimes will increase as the online cash exchange rises?
Recently twitter accounts of Rahul Gandhi , Vijay Mallya and Barkha Dutt were hacked by a group of hackers called ‘legion’. The inability to find out these ‘legions’ and preventing them from further hacking exposes the cut off points of our cyber cell. If Russian hackers can sneak into DNC’s mails and affect US presidential elections, how difficult is for them to hack our e wallets and cashless transactions? There is a need to rethink on this issue whether we can handle these increased cybercrimes? Otherwise it is people like you and me who will suffer…
I am neither a ‘Modi supporter’ nor a critic. I just expressed what I feel about this decision of ‘Cashless Society’ and revealed some facts which are need to be overlooked. ‘Going Cashless’ is really a great idea but for people who are tech-savvy . When it comes to people below poverty line, beggars and daily wage workers , it is as painful as demonetisation.If a change is restrained to a specific segment of society then its not a change that we are see looking for. Is it too early to be ‘cashless’? May be we should borrow some time to work on our basics like getting ‘Aadhar’ to all ,improving cyber security, mobile networks and internet connections all over India and then aim for a ‘Cashlesss Economy’…..