Biggies watch, small businessman take to PayTM

The Asian Age.  | Shahab Ansari

Metros, Mumbai

Paan shops, book stalls, etc are equipped with e-payment facilities better than some larger brands.

Small-time traders across the city display signs at their shops indicating that they would accept money via PayTM. They added that the service has come in handy for them after demonetisation. (Photo: Asian Age)

Mumbai: It has been almost two months since demonetisation, and while we have had tea vendors, local bookshop owners and others who have started accepting PayTM or credit or debit cards as a form of payment, there are shops that are relatively more famous but do not accept online payments or even cards for that matter.

When The Asian Age visited Monginis cake shop at Clare road in Byculla on Tuesday around 4.30 pm, the attendant there refused to accept payment through any e-payment mode. “We accept only cash,” said the person. When asked what the reason for this was, the man said without revealing his identity, “We have already applied for card machines so that we can accept payment though debit and credit cards, but due to some reason, the machines for this area are not being approved easily. But we expect to get the problem solved soon and would thereafter accept cards.”

Moreover, while a Baskin Robbins ice-cream shop at Kings Circle has the facility to accept payments though PayTM, the attendant at another Baskin Robbins shop at Lalbaug in Central Mumbai expressed inability to accept anything apart from cash, saying that branch does not have a card machine. Around 5 pm, the attendant, who did not wish to go on record, said, “I can accept only cash at present, but we would soon have some facility for e-payment.”

Samir Gazdar from the Worli head office of Baskin Robbins said, “Card machines are not available in any of the banks. Though we have already applied for the same, we are not getting the machines and thus we cannot do anything.” He added, “We have tied up with Quickwallet and within a week’s time, this facility would be available with us across Mumbai.”

Meanwhile, on the other hand, The Asian Age found people running small-scale businesses, like paan shops and bookstalls on footpaths, to be using e-wallets to deal with customers who don’t have cash.

“I have been using PayTM for around a year now because I used to attend some book fairs, but the service turned out to be very handy for me when the government decided to demonetise Rs 1,000 and 500 notes and customers were willing to pay through e-wallets,” said Dharmesh Bhai, a book vendor at Mantunga.

Nizamuddin Shaikh, a paan shop owner near Kings Circle, also accepts payments though PayTM. “Business was affected negatively due to the ban on Rs 1,000 and 500 notes and I hence decided to tie up with e-wallets. The results are satisfactory since a customer who does not wish to spend cash can pay by e-wallet.”