Budget 2017: Jaitley says BHIM app now has 125 lakh downloads
Launched on December 30, the Unified Payments Interface (UPI)-based BHIM app is currently available on Google’s Play Store. Earlier, Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant had said that the app had been downloaded 3 million times and enabled over 5 lakh transactions since its launch.
BHIM app or otherwise known as Bharat Interface for Money is currently being used by over 125 lakh Indian citizens, Union Finance minister Arun Jaitley said in his Budget 2017 speech on Wednesday.
Launched on December 30, the Unified Payments Interface (UPI)-based BHIM app is currently available on Google's Play Store. Earlier, Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant had said that the app had been downloaded 3 million times and enabled over 5 lakh transactions since its launch.
"Bhim App - 3 million download since launch, No 1 on Playstore in India amongst all apps, over 500,000 transactions since launch. #MakeinIndia," Kant said in a tweet.
In a bid to further push adoption of e-payments in the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on December 30 launched the BHIM app that will enable fast and secure cashless transactions using mobile phones.
Named after the architect of the Indian Constitution, Babasaheb Bhim Rao Ambedkar, the Bharat Interface for Money (BHIM) is a simplified payment platform designed to make Unified Payment Interface (UPI) and USSD payment modes simpler and usable across feature phones and smart phones.
Developed by National Payment Corporation of India (NPCI), BHIM is supported by host of banks, including State Bank of India, ICICI Bank, Axis Bank, HDFC Bank, Bank of India, Canara Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Oriental Bank of Commerce and Punjab National Bank, among others.
Jaitley also said that the government will launch two new schemes to promote the use of the BHIM app. One will be referral payments for individuals, and the other will cashback for merchants who accept payments from BHIM.
Earlier President Pranab Mukherjee's official Twitter handled had posted that BHIM has become one of the most popular mobile app-based payment mechanisms in the country. The Finance Minister also announced that a Merchant version of Aadhaar-enabled payments will be launched shortly. The government has also promised an update to the BHIM app as well in order to boost usage.
BHIM was recently integrated with UID and now allows payments using Aadhaar number. The Unified Payments Interface (UPI)-based app will get biometric-based Aadhaar Pay option as well, but that feature is yet to roll out. It is expected to launch in the coming weeks. The iOS version of the app was promised earlier, but has yet to be launched.