Money & Banking

‘Customers must be educated on usage of cards’

K Ram Kumar Mumbai | Updated on January 16, 2018 Published on October 28, 2016

Under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana, about 19 crore debit cardshave been issued to customers so far

Bank depositors’ body also says a hassle-free complaint resolution mechanism should be made available 24x7

The All India Bank Depositors’ Association has expressed concern at banks aggressively pushing debit cards to customers, including to Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) customers, without properly educating them on their usage.

This comes in the backdrop of the recent serious case of card data compromise coming to light.

Last month, 19 banks in the country received complaints from 641 customers about fraudulent transactions (mainly from China and the US while the customers were in India) totalling ₹1.30 crore.

Ashok Ravat, Honorary Secretary, All India Bank Depositors’ Association, said the cards push, be it ATM cards, credit cards or debit cards, by banks is happening without properly educating customers.

He underscored that “a card involves changing PIN, changing password and so many things. Unless the customer is properly educated regarding digital handling of his money, he should not be allowed to access alternative banking channels. And that should be the responsibility of each bank. They are supposed to do it but they are not doing it.”

For example, a customer receives a message that from his account, say, ₹30,000 has been withdrawn.

Now, the customer should be literate enough to understand the meaning of the message he received from his bank.

Complaint resolution

Ravat explained: “If that is not happening then what will the customer’s reaction be? He will think that the bank has intimated him something. That is all. But then it could be a fraudulent transaction.

“….And now when banking services are available on alternative channels, such as ATMs, internet and mobile phones 24x7, then in case of an emergency, a hassle-free customer complaint resolution mechanism should also be available 24x7.” Currently, banks send transaction alert messages only in English.

The Association Secretary felt that banks should take steps to send the messages in the customer’s language so that he is aware of the transactions taking place in his account.

On the issue of educating customers, Ravat said short videos on TV and other mass media should be brought out by organisations such as the Indian Banks’ Association in order to create more awareness about transacting via alternative banking channels. Money from the Reserve Bank of India’s depositor education and awareness fund could be used towards this end.

Under the PMJDY, which was launched in August 2014 to ensure access to various financial services — including basic savings bank account, need-based credit, remittances facility, insurance and pension to the weaker sections and low-income groups — about 25 crore new accounts have been opened, with about 19 crore debit cards being issued to customers, as on October 19.

Ravat observed that customer awareness programmes should be specifically aimed at PMJDY customers so that they don’t fall prey to fraudulent transactions.

Published on October 28, 2016

A letter from the Editor


Dear Readers,

The coronavirus crisis has changed the world completely in the last few months. All of us have been locked into our homes, economic activity has come to a near standstill. Everyone has been impacted.

Including your favourite business and financial newspaper. Our printing and distribution chains have been severely disrupted across the country, leaving readers without access to newspapers. Newspaper delivery agents have also been unable to service their customers because of multiple restrictions.

In these difficult times, we, at BusinessLine have been working continuously every day so that you are informed about all the developments – whether on the pandemic, on policy responses, or the impact on the world of business and finance. Our team has been working round the clock to keep track of developments so that you – the reader – gets accurate information and actionable insights so that you can protect your jobs, businesses, finances and investments.

We are trying our best to ensure the newspaper reaches your hands every day. We have also ensured that even if your paper is not delivered, you can access BusinessLine in the e-paper format – just as it appears in print. Our website and apps too, are updated every minute, so that you can access the information you want anywhere, anytime.

But all this comes at a heavy cost. As you are aware, the lockdowns have wiped out almost all our entire revenue stream. Sustaining our quality journalism has become extremely challenging. That we have managed so far is thanks to your support. I thank all our subscribers – print and digital – for your support.

I appeal to all or readers to help us navigate these challenging times and help sustain one of the truly independent and credible voices in the world of Indian journalism. Doing so is easy. You can help us enormously simply by subscribing to our digital or e-paper editions. We offer several affordable subscription plans for our website, which includes Portfolio, our investment advisory section that offers rich investment advice from our highly qualified, in-house Research Bureau, the only such team in the Indian newspaper industry.

A little help from you can make a huge difference to the cause of quality journalism!

Support Quality Journalism
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor
You have read 1 out of 3 free articles for this week. For full access, please subscribe and get unlimited access to all sections.