Finance

SBI yet to refund Rs 164 cr undue fee charged from Jan Dhan a/c holders

State Bank of India (SBI) is yet to return Rs 164 crore of undue fee charged from the account holders of Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) towards digital payments during April 2017 and December 2019, a report said.

“On directions from the government, SBI has returned just about Rs 90 crore, thereby withholding the bigger chunk of at least Rs 164 crore with itself,” said the report prepared by IIT-Mumbai.

It said that during April 2017 to September 2020, SBI had collected over Rs 254 crore towards at least 14 crore UPI/ RuPay transactions by charging Rs 17.70 per transactions on BSBDA (Basic Savings Bank Deposit Account) customers under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY).

Queries sent to the country’s largest lender on return of charges levied on debit transactions done by such account holders during the said period of 33 months did not elicit any response.

Since June 1, 2017, unlike any other bank in India, the report said, SBI charged Rs 17.70 for every debit transaction beyond four a month.

Debit transaction means any withdrawal transaction that includes cash withdrawal, Unified Payments Interface (UPI), Immediate Payment Service (IMPS), National Electronic Funds Transfer (NEFT), Real-Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) pre-authorised standing instruction, cheque, etc.

This has adversely impacted the BSBDA customers of SBI who, on the call of the government and RBI, embraced digital means of financial transactions.

“Due to this attitude of SBI and subsequent to RBI remaining noncommittal, in mid-August 2020, the Finance Ministry was approached for addressing the concern.

“The Ministry was prompt in their actions and the CBDT by end-August 2020, advised SBI to refund the charges collected since January 1, 2020 on transactions carried out using the prescribed digital payment modes,” it said.

On August 30, 2020, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) advised banks to refund the charges collected since January 1, 2020 on transactions carried out using the prescribed digital payment modes that include the UPI and the RuPay debit card, and not to impose charges on future transactions carried out through such modes.

In adherence to the CBDT directive, as late as February 17, 2021, SBI initiated refund of Rs 17.70 for the UPI and RuPay debit card digital transactions to the BSBDA customers, the report prepared by Ashish Das, Professor of Statistics said.

Levying of charges on BSBDA is guided by September 2013 RBI guidelines. As per the direction these account holders are ‘allowed more than four withdrawals’ in a month, at the bank’s discretion provided the bank does not charge for the same.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor



Credit – Financial matters

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button