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Despite banks' resistance to the Reserve Bank of India's plan to provide account number portability, similar to mobile number portability, the government has sought the guidance of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) and the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) on the matter.

The RBI move is aimed at helping customers switch to other banks while retaining their existing account number, but the Indian Banking Association and trade unions are opposing the move.

Sources said the government wants to extend the facility to customers whose accounts are linked with their Aadhaar. Therefore, it has asked the UIDAI and NPCI to provide a solution to concerns raised by banks. At a recent meeting called by the Finance Ministry, the RBI enumerated problem areas like technology, the sheer number of accounts, as well as frauds and NPAs as obstacles in implementation.

Earlier in 2017, then RBI deputy governor SS Mundra had asked banks to accentuate the process as it would improve customer service. "The prospect of an aggrieved customer silently moving her account to another bank has become very real," Mundra had said at a banking event.

PRO-CUSTOMER MOVE

  • In 2012, the RBI had allowed intra-bank portability, allowing customers to shift A/Cs to another branch of the same bank.  
  • There are around 80 crore bank accounts, most of them opened after the launch of Jan Dhan Yojana in 2015.
Last modified on Tuesday, 08 May 2018

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