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Cash-out option on M-wallets

Withdrawing cash from your mobile wallet or prepaid cash card could soon be a reality.
Print Edition: December 2013
Cash-out option on M-wallets

Withdrawing cash from your mobile wallet or prepaid cash card could soon be a reality. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has given its nod to a pilot project to check the technical and operational feasibility of allowing cash pay-outs from prepaid payment instruments such as mobile money of non-banking entities.

The project will be launched under the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) in association with prepaid payment service providers such as Airtel, Vodafone, Itz Cash and Oxigen Services. It is expected to go live before end-March 2014.

Pramod Saxena, MD, Oxigen Services India, says, "The move will help a large number of people who do not have bank accounts and transfer money through informal channels."

The project will establish a system of Aadhar-based biometric authentication of beneficiaries. Rajesh Bansal, assistant director general, UIDAI, said that earlier the RBI had concerns with regard to prepaid payment instruments being used for money laundering purpose and, therefore, had not allowed cash-out facility on such instruments offered by non-banking entities. "However, it is now exploring the idea of the Aadhaar number being used for authentication purpose in transactions through instruments such as mobile wallet," he said.

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