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Rupay: India's Own Payment Processor

Econonic times says that soon India will have it’s own payment processing firm (to rival Visa and Mastercard) called Rupay.

After almost two years of planning, the National Payments Corporation has at last finalised the proposed unique India Card which once commercially launched would be an domestic alternative to the global real-time payment processing firms like Visa and MasterCard .

"We have finalised name of the proposed card as Rupay at our board meeting here today. We have also finalised the logo for the same," a senior official of the RBI-set up National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), told media this evening. The official sought not to be named.

NPCI’s web site has no information. But they do run India’s financial switch (for interconnecting ATMs) and also, a interbank mobile-based fund transfer mechanism (for mobile banking) since Nov 2010. The volumes that they show running through the system are impressive, with over 9 crore transactions every month.

With that backbone they can easily do the payment processing firm, at substantially lower cost than the 1% that Mastercard and Visa seem to charge. Now all the banks have to get together and market it. But you can bet that the political power of Visa and Mastercard will try its best to get our government to delay and eventually, crush the program. Given the amount of blatant corruption that’s out there, I wouldn’t be surprised to find that, regardless of such news snippets, nothing is allowed to happen.

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