Railway passengers in the country can now book their tickets, do shopping and pay service bills using RuPay pre-paid cards, as the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) launched the debit card service in the national capital on Tuesday.
The cards can be made available from UBI offices or through IRCTC online. Initially the service will be available for booking tickets and later on, facilities for shopping and bill payments will be added.
The service was launched by the IRCTC in collaboration with Union Bank of India and National Payment Corporation of India.
"It is a union with your bank for customers' interest," Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu said in the capital city while launching the IRCTC-UBI RuPay pre-paid card.
RuPay is the country's own card payment gateway network like Visa and Master Card, and provides an alternative system for banks to provide a debit card service.
UBI CMD Arun Tiwari said "the card holder will get free Rs 1 lakh accident insurance coverage as part of the benefits to customers."
In order to make the card attractive, reward points will be given on each transaction.
One can have the card with a loading limit of Rs 10,000 with partial Know Your Customer (KYC) details or Rs 50,000 loading limit with full KYC.
Manocha said the first five transactions per card every month done on IRCTC for purchase of train tickets will be free and no transaction charges will be levied to customers for six months only.
For every subsequent transaction post the free usage, customer will be charged Rs 10 per transaction.
The transaction charge would be Rs 10 per ticket for booking a ticket through the card on the IRCTC portal.
Prabhu said Railways was partnering with banks and financial institutions to promote passengers' interest.
"It is in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's financial inclusive programme as one does not need to have a bank account in UBI to have the card and you can avail it online also," the railway minister said.
IRCTC Chairman and Managing Director AK Manocha said the card was a first-of-its-kind in the market as both virtual as well as physical cards are being issued to customers in two variants.
IRCTC had signed an MoU with UBI for executing the RuPay card project.