March saw a surge in the use of digital platforms for monetary transactions
Hyderabad: Keeping in mind that currency notes that may have been counted using saliva can spread novel coronavirus, stats show that people could be taking the digital route for making payments to avoid coronavirus. In recent weeks, the number of digital transactions, especially in tier-2 and tier 3 cities, is on the rise.
Speaking to Asian Age, Sunil Khosla, head of digital business, India Transact Services Limited (ITSL) said: “In March, the number of online transactions has increased by 10 percent over February. Most of the payments are for home essentials from mom and pop stores, among others.”
He said the use of digital platforms to transfer money in January and February was almost the same. But the March saw a surge of 10 per cent over February, though by industry trends it should have decreased.
Most of the 8,500 payment points maintained by ITSL were earlier used at petrol stations, chemists and quick-service restaurants. “Now purchases are being made from regular mom-and-pop stores too, which may weed out cash from the equation,” Khosla felt.
Earlier, digital and online payments were for flight tickets, food and hotels. But since the aviation and hospitality sector are down due to coronavirus, the money going online must be for the purchase of home needs, Khosla remarked.
However, this has not stopped people from carrying cash. There are many people who are into panic withdrawal of money from ATMs. The fear could be over the virus affecting banking operations too.