With the aim to promote digital transactions, two state owned corporation of Andhra Pradesh will accept payment through BharatQR, an interoperable quick response code acceptance solution launched by the Reserve Bank of India. As part of the ‘Vizag less–cash city’ initiative underway between Visa and the government of Andhra Pradesh, the Eastern Power Distribution Company of A.P. Ltd. (EPDCL) and the Southern Power Distribution Corporation of A.P. Ltd. (SPDCL) have decided to accept payments through BharatQR, said a statement.
“Andhra Pradesh power distribution companies are setting an impressive example for discoms across India to adopt similar systems,” said Nara Lokesh, Minister of IT and Rural Development, government of Andhra Pradesh. He also informed that to promote digital payment state is also exploring the possibility of abolishing surcharge levied to consumers on digital payments.
Visa and the government of Andhra Pradesh through the less-cash initiative, Vizag Digital Dan Sankalp, have identified electricity bill payments as an important use case for payment digitisation. Given their wide reach, recurring nature of transactions and low ticket sizes, such payments are expected to drive shift in consumer behaviour towards digital payments; in particular, among first-time users, said Visa.
“A low-cost acceptance solution, BharatQR has the potential to drive payment digitization at scale, and be a convenient way to pay and get paid for both consumers and merchants alike. Further, digitization of such citizen to government payments at scale, would significantly help reduce India’s net cost of cash estimated to be 1.7% of its GDP, while accelerating the country’s economic growth,” said TR Ramachandran, Group Country Manager, Visa, India & South Asia.
BharatQR is a secure, network-agnostic interface that enables customers to use their smartphones to make payments without divulging information like card numbers and CVV. To use BharatQR to pay their electricity bills, customers will simply need to log in to their bank’s app, and scan the QR code displayed on their electricity bill, enabling instant payment. Alternately, customers may enter their unique Customer IDs online and generate a QR code that can be scanned using their bank app.