The Reserve Bank today granted an in-principle approval to National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) to be the Bharat Bill Payment Central Unit (BBPCU) under BBPS, an integrated bill payment system.
"The Reserve Bank has today decided to grant in-principle approval to the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) to function as the Bharat Bill Payment Central Unit (BBPCU) in BBPS," RBI said in a statement.
Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS) is an integrated bill payment system to function as a tiered structure for operating bill payment system in India with a single brand image, providing convenience of 'anytime anywhere' bill payment to customers.
The present scope of BBPS will include utility bill payments such as electricity, water, gas, telephone and Direct-to-Home (DTH).
"As the central unit, NPCI will set necessary operational, technical and business standards for the entire system and its participants, and also undertake clearing and settlement activities."
"Based on the experience, this would be extended to include other types of repetitive payments like school/ university fees, municipal taxes, etc in future," it said.
The operating units under the payment system will function as entities facilitating collection of bills or repetitive payments.
RBI had invited applications for authorisation/approval to function as operating unit from non-banks and banks.
The last date for receipt of such applications or approval requests was November 20, 2015 which was extended to December 18, 2015.
RBI had received 12 applications for authorisation from non-bank entities and 18 requests for approval from banks for operating as a BBPOU.
RBI said it would continue to receive further applications for authorisation or approval as operating units till close of business on December 18, 2015.
In November 2014, RBI had issued guidelines for setting up the Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS).
As per the guidelines, it was indicated that NPCI will function as BBPCU and there could be multiple Bharat Bill Payment Operating Units-BBPOUs (Operating Unit) under BBPS.