Apropos “Post office hopes” (September 7); I want to compliment the government and India Post for launching the much anticipated Payments Bank. People in small towns and villages in particular stand to gain from this. No bank — public or private — has this kind of a network and a ready workforce of more than 3,00,000 trained postmen. A postman in the rural areas is not just someone who brings letters for the people; he is also a trusted friend.
Of course, there are many hurdles to overcome but then which new scheme does not face trouble in the beginning? As you have mentioned, “many rural consumers will continue to prefer human or physical interaction with a bank to the digital-first approach”. Add to this the fact that the trusted postman is like one of their own and the combination would mean they don’t worry about being cheated by middlemen and touts who offer their services for getting the simple folk money from banks. With 170 million customers (already) of the post office savings system, the Payments Bank brings tremendous sense of security because they are dealing with a sarakari institution and not some new bank or a micro-finance set up.
With a little tweaking of RBI’s rules, this scheme is bound to become popular and sustainable.
Krishan Kalra, Gurugram
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