Saturday, January 4, 2014

Post-office ATMs on the cards

Dear Comrades,

Your ATM (automated teller machine) and debit cards will no longer be linked to just banks. From March, you might be able to swipe these in the head post offices of all Haryana districts as well.

Under a union government project, the facility, along with the ATM counters, is coming to post-office customers in three months, sources in the India Post’s state headquarters in Ambala have said. Rural people still find it convenient to maintain accounts in post offices.

“After the ATM counters are installed, thousands of customers in the state will get easy access to accounts,” said an official. The plan includes Internet banking from post offices in the later phases. 

The core banking facility will allow people to do transactions from any networked post office in the state. The debit-card facility would be optional for the account holders, said superintendent of posts (Karnal circle) JK Gulati. “Account holders who want to withdraw money now have to visit post office in business hours, and have no facility of electronic transfer of money to a third party,” he added.

“Unlike the banking sector, the post offices are not profit driven, and our account holders can use the debit-card facility for a nominal annual fee,” said Gulati, adding: “Most of our account holders are senior citizens and monthly-income-scheme subscribers, who carry out frequent transactions and will benefit from the ATM facility.” After the head post offices, the other post offices will also be brought on the network.

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