The government’s National Institution for Transforming India, or Niti Aayog, has asked the National Payment Corporation of India to come up with an award scheme for those making digital payments. The scheme, a lucky draw, is reported to be a weekly one where prizes can go up to around Rs 10 lakh, besides one “grand prize” of Rs one crore. Rs 125 crore will be made available for the scheme, The Times of India reported.
“Weekly lucky draw of the transaction IDs generated in that week, the contours of which are being finalised. The Aayog has also proposed quarterly draw for grand prizes,” Niti Aayog said in a statement. The focus of this will also be on “poor, lower middle class and small businesses”, it said. Anyone who has used digital payment systems after November 8 – including Unstructured Supplementary Service Data, Aadhaar Enabled Payment System, Unified Payments Interface and RuPay Cards – will be eligible.
Coming more than a month after the government announced the demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes, it emphasised the importance of encouraging such electronic transactions that can help minimise tax evasion. An official told The Times of India that ten customers and ten merchants will be given the prize every week.
The country has faced a massive cash deficit since the November 8 announcement to demonetise the high-value currency notes. Since then, a slew of initiatives have been announced to promote digital transactions to bring in a “cashless economy” in India.