Source: News Bharati English27 Nov 2016 15:32:15

New Delhi, November 27: The Ministry of Urban Development has asked all the statutory 4,041 Urban Local Bodies to shift to e-payments at the earliest as a part of the ongoing efforts to move towards cashless transactions of all kind. These cities and towns account for about 75% of the total 40 crore urban populations in the country. 
Also, Minister of Urban Development M.Venkaiah Naidu inaugurated cashless payment system introduced by the Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation and orientation camps for educating citizens on e-payment.

Rajiv Gauba, Secretary (Urban Development) through interactive video-conferencing conveyed the central governments message to the officials of these 4,041 urban local bodies. Senior officials of concerned States also participated during the half day long interaction on various aspects of ensuring cashless transactions.

State and city level officials are asked to promote internet banking (RTGS/NEFT), online banking using credit and debit cards for cashless transactions besides using Public Finance Management Systems(PFMS) developed by the Ministry of Financing for fund transfer, accounting and reconciliation up to the level of cities and towns.

Gauba stressed that all transactions relating to both income and expenditure of urban local bodies needs to be shifted to e-payment mode. These include payment of Property Tax, Professional Tax, all user charges like water and power bills, all kinds of fee and license charges, online booking of community halls, issue and renewal of birth and death certificates, registration of shops and other establishments, enrollment of library membership etc.

Expenditure to be made cashless include payment of salaries and wages to all regular and contractual employees, all contract and work relate payments, procurements, beneficiary payments like social security etc.

City governments were asked to take up necessary infrastructure and capacity building, awareness campaigns for opening of accounts for employees of all categories and their family members.

States have been asked to adopt Public Finance Management systems (PFMS) up to city level to enable transfer, accounting, reconciliation and monitoring of transfer of funds under various government schemes.

To illustrate the transaction volumes, 59 cities have collected tax revenues of Rs.1, 722 cr during November so far including dues payable. These include; Ahmedabad-Rs.187 cr, Bhopal-Rs.27 cr, Chennai-Rs.80 cr, Faridabad- Rs.17 cr, Guwahaty-R.s. 14 cr, Hyderabad-Rs.208 cr, Indore-Rs.32 cr, Kakinada (AP)-Rs.20 cr, Kalyan(Maharashtra)-Rs.170 cr, Lucknow-Rs.23 cr, Raipur-Rs.17 cr, Visakhapatnam-Rs.16 cr, Amritsar-Rs.12 cr, Kanpur-Rs.30 cr, Mumbai-Rs.167 cr and New Delhi Municipal Council-Rs.84 cr.

Officials from Madhya Pradesh informed that the major 7 cities have already enabled cashless transactions and all the 378 cities and towns would do so by March next year. Uttar Pradesh and Goa have reported using PFMS up to city level and found it to be very useful.