Updated: January 9, 2017 6:50:44 pm
In a big relief for commuters, Petrol pumps on Sunday night deferred their decision not to accept credit and debit cards for fuel purchase till January 13, news agency PTI reported. This comes hours after petrol pumps across the country decided not to accept plastic money from tomorrow as banks decided to put transaction charge on them instead of consumers.
“We have received official communication from oil marketing companies that the transaction fee charges have been deferred till January 13, 2017. AIPDA also has decided to defer the agitation till January 13,” said Ajay Bansal, President, All India Petroleum Dealers Association (AIPDA).
To promote cash-less transactions, the government had waived the Merchant Discount Rate (MDR) on fuel purchase post demonetisation for consumers. But after the expiry of the 50-day window, the banks decided to levy MDR on petrol pump owners, making petrol pumps bear 1 per cent on all credit card transactions and between 0.25 per cent and 1 per cent on all debit card transactions from January 9.
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“In view of the debit of MDR of 1% it has been decided to stop accepting payment through Credit/Debit Cards from 9th January 2017,” Ajay Bansal, President of All India Petroleum Dealers Association, had said in a statement. Last month, the government had announced .75 per cent discount on purchase of fuel through card.
Bansal had also said that since their profit margin is fixed on a per KL basis, they could not bear additional charges levied by banks. “Our margins are fixed on a per KL basis and do not have any scope to absorb these charges. We have specific mechanisms to compute the margin and these do not have any scope for credit card MDR. This will lead to financial loses for the dealers,” he said.
He also alleged delay in settlement of dues by banks. “To compound matters further these credit card machine issuers are delaying settlements and not settling the entire dues as per our settlements. There are disputes about purchases being returned or not delivered. In a Retail Outlet there is no scope for returns or not being delivered a product once you have paid for the same. The reconciliation of swipes to amount being credit to our accounts is causing a lot of hardships and losses to a large percentage of the dealer community,” he added.
The ICICI bank, however, said that it will not charge any transaction fees. “We are not charging any transaction fee on card payment from tomorrow,” said ICICI spokesperson.
With inputs from agencies
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