The country’s first ‘India Post Payments Bank (IPBB)’ was launched in two states, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh, on Monday. India Post started its payment bank services as pilot project at Ranchi and Raipur while the rest of the districts of the country will be added to the service by September 2017.
“One IPBB branch will be opened in each district of the country and around 1.55 lakh post office branches will be linked to it by September 2017,” said Union finance minister Arun Jaitley after launching the bank through video conferencing from New Delhi.
The initiative will spread the chain of banks in the villages. It will encourage small entrepreneurs and inculcate saving habits among villagers, officials said here.
On the very first day, three post offices in Kanke, Sukurhuttu and Borio in Ranchi were added with the service and over 2500 bank accounts were already opened under the system. One can open a bank account in the bank with only `100. Under the regular saving account and basic saving account scheme, a person can deposit up to `1 lakh per account.
IPPB or the payments bank will offer a rate of interest of up to 5.5% on the deposits in the savings accounts and it varies depending on the amount deposited.
Jharkhand circle chief postmaster general Anil Kumar said, “Jharkhand has around 3200 post offices and they will be linked with the service by September this year.” He said customers would not have to move different offices and branches for payment or purchase products, as all would be available under one roof in IPBB.
Over 64 financial companies, including three from Jharkhand, have submitted proposals to tie up with IPBB. They sell their products and deposit premiums or EMIs through the post office. “Postal officials will not be engaged in the service but separate manpower is being created to offer the services, who will be paid by Bank corporation formed recently,” Kumar said.
Earlier, post offices used to run Government of India’s saving bank account scheme and they were not guided by RBI. “We were not able to get various benefits under RBI and use its different gateways. With IPPB, now customers get all banking and post office products under one roof,” Kumar said.