The Department of Posts (DoP) has launched the mobile-based money transfer service by Post Offices for quicker transfer of money from one city to another. Launching the service, the Union Minister of State for Communications, Information Technology and Home, Mr Gurudas Kamat, said the aim of launching this service was to help those who were unable to avail banking services. The service will be operated by DoP with technological support from BSNL.

He said to begin with, the service has been launched between Punjab and Bihar Postal Circles for transfer of money up to Rs 50,000. The complete roll-out throughout the country would be completed in eight weeks, he added.

The Minister launched the service by remitting Rs 1,000 to Help Age India at Patna.

Mr Kamat said persons intending to use the service would have to go to the Post Office which will provide them a unique PIN code after the transfer of money.

The sender would have to send the PIN to the recipient through a text message who would be home delivered the money after verification of the PIN on his mobile. The recipient could also go to the Post Office and collect the money, he said.

Mr Kamat said India Post is the largest service network for transfer of money and annually about nine crore money orders are being sent on the postal network.

He said that to speed up the money transfer service, the DoP had introduced Electronic MO and Internet MO and that the mobile MO was the third such service.

The Secretary of Posts, Ms Radhika Doraiswamy, said that the DoP also proposes to interconnect all the 1, 55,000 Post Offices in the country to subsequently introduce Core Postal Service.

She said the department would also introduce the PO Savings Bank for which the mandatory clearances were being sought.

Referring to the high cost of sending money through MO, she said: “We need to reduce the Commission charges. We should be able to do this soon.’’

The charges for mobile money transfer will be the same as it is on the traditional money order — five per cent of the remitted amount, a department spokesman said.

The Director of BSNL, Mr R.K. Aggarwal, said that the BSNL-PO joint venture will help the rural customers in availing of money transfer services. This will also revolutionise the financial inclusion programme of the government.

He said in 1947 the tele-density in the country was 0.47 per cent which increased to 4.7 per cent in 1997 in fifty years. But after that within 14 years, the tele-density has now reached 70 per cent.

The total number of mobile connections at present is 850 million and 15 million new connections are being activated in the country every month, he said.

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