New Delhi: One month after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced demonetisation of high-value currency notes of 500 and 1,000 which accounted for 86 percent of the cash in circulation, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday announced various discounts on digital payments for fuel and train tickets.
To promote cashless transactions as well as in-built cost in a democratic set-up, the finance minister said the government is promoting payment by credit, debit cards and e-wallets.
“Dealing with cash has its own economic costs, which is why the government is promoting payments by credit cards, debit cards and e-wallets,” said the Finance Minister.
“Petrol and Diesel will get cheaper for those who choose digital modes of transactions. They will get a discount of 0.75 percent on every transaction they make at various petrol pumps,” said the Finance Minister stating digital payments have witnessed an upward trigger from 20 percent to 40 percent at petrol pumps.
“4.5 crore consumers buy petrol and diesel worth Rs. 1,800 crore daily; in one month, digital payments have doubled to 40 percent,” he added.
“People buying monthly seasonal tickets in the suburban railway networks through digital payment mode, to get 0.75 percent discount,” added Jaitley specifying that it will be effective from Jan 1, 2017, starting from the Mumbai suburban railways.
“The government will provide two POS or Point of Sale machines for free to each village that has a population of over 8,000. Around 75 crore people will get access to these machines,” he said.
Adding to this he said that passengers purchasing tickets online will also get a five percent discount on accommodation, catering and retiring room at railway stations across India.
No service tax will be charged on transactions of up to Rs. 2,000 if a card is used.
“People paying general insurance premiums will get a 10 percent discount and eight percent discount for life insurance if the payment is made online,” added the minister.