UIDAI lens on Airtel over opening payments bank account using eKYC 

The UIDAI has slapped notices on Bharti Airtel and Airtel Payments Bank over its retailers allegedly opening payments bank accounts without taking "informed consent" of customers.

Published: 21st September 2017 06:50 PM  |   Last Updated: 21st September 2017 06:50 PM   |  A+A-

Bharti Airtel. (File photo | Reuters)

Image used for representational purpose only


NEW DELHI: The UIDAI has slapped notices on Bharti Airtel and Airtel Payments Bank over its retailers allegedly opening payments bank accounts without taking "informed consent" of customers who go for Aadhaar-based mobile SIM verification.

The Aadhaar-issuing body, Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), in the notices seen by PTI, stated that acts of not taking consent and informing the purpose of authentication was a violation of rules and punishable with financial penalties.

It also asked both Bharti Airtel and its payments bank entity to take immediate corrective measures and report back to the authority on the same.

Reached for comments, an Airtel spokesperson said the payments bank is fully compliant with RBI and UIDAI guidelines and follows a stringent customer onboarding process.

"Airtel Payments Bank accounts are opened only after explicit consent from the customer. We will continue to educate retailers and strengthen our process to ensure transparency to customers and compliance with regulation," the company said in an e-mail response.

The UIDAI in the notices stated that it has come to know that "Airtel retailers are allegedly opening Airtel payments Bank account at the time of performing Aadhaar e-KYC verification without informing the purpose of e-KYC and also without taking informed consent of the customer".

Also, certain complaints were made to UIDAI alleging that Airtel opened payments bank account without approval and the said account was then linked for receiving LPG subsidy.

The UIDAI is learnt to have said such acts violated specific sections of Aadhaar Act which require entities to mandatorily obtain consent of an individual before collecting authentication related information, and also inform them about the purpose of the authentication.

When contacted, UIDAI spokesperson refused to comment on the matter.

In November 2016, Airtel Payments Bank had rolled out banking services in Rajasthan, becoming the first payments bank to go live in the country.

Payments banks can accept deposits and savings bank deposits from individuals and small businesses, up to a maximum of Rs 1 lakh per account. 

Stay up to date on all the latest Business news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp