Goa is all set to become cashless and digitised from October this year, Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar said in Panaji on Tuesday.
Making this announcement at a function organised by the NABARD (National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development), Parrikar said the details of the “hundred per cent digitisation” would be unveiled in the state budget 2018-19 which will be placed before the Legislative Assembly next month.
“We are going full scale into the digital payment mode. Six months after April 1, 2018, we will have 100 per cent digitisation,” the chief minister said. He said no government payments will be accepted in cash, except for emergency requirements, from October onwards.
The state government has fully shifted to digital payment transfer mode or e-mode, he said. “To accept the payment through digital mode, we will require a large number of Point of Sale (PoS) machines. We have already signed an agreement with the State Bank of India to provide 650 PoS,” he said.
Parrikar said the 650 PoS machines may not be adequate and that he is “going to take a step ahead”, but didn’t elaborate. “….Nitty-gritties would be spelt out in the state budget,” the CM said. “There would be hundred per cent digitisation by September 30, 2018, which means from October 1, no cash would be accepted at the government counters,” the chief minister said.
Parrikar said digitisation is the best thing that can happen to our country. “Less cash means less corruption, less cash (means) less evil and at the same time an improvement in the state income,” he said.
Parrikar said though the market was short of excessive cash post demonetisation, the cash could start building up over a period of time. “The Reserve Bank should monitor how much cash is deposited because you cannot withdraw more than Rs two lakh (from bank account) now. So they know that by recovering Rs two lakh each time, the cash starts getting into the cupboards where it is kept with some naphthalene balls,” the BJP leader said.
In a lighter vein, Parrikar said one can identify whether the cash is genuine just by smelling it. “You can make out whether cash (notes) is official or is black money just by smelling it. If you smell naphtha, you can be sure that this is stocked cash,” he said.