With Narendra Modi’s brave, forward thinking, plan to transform India’s economy from an antiquated paper money economy into a sophisticated digital cashless system, for the most part, being smoothly implemented – it’s time to report on some of the fantastic achievements.
Following demonetization on November 8th, many villages patriotically got behind Modi’s dream and entered into friendly competition with one another to see which villages could be first to go completely cashless. This friendly spirit of competition has delivered amazing results with many thousands of villages now successfully eliminating dirty paper money from their local economies. They will begin to see the benefits of digital almost immediately.
Akodara, a village in Gujarat, became India’s first digital village in 2015 (a full year before demonetization) and is now reaping the benefits of a cashless economy. The local economy has really picked up with everyone enjoying the ease of digital transactions. “Going cashless has many alternate routes, like card payments, net banking and mobile payments” reports Navtej Singh, a local haberdashery shop owner. Singh also mentioned that as his village had the good sense to already have cashless systems up and running before demonetization, he had suffered no loss of business – in fact his sales have grown a full thirty percent. It is likely that the villages who have converted to cashless following demonetization will see similar growth in the near future.
Mumbai schools have introduced cash cards, food coupons and mobile wallets for students to buy stationery, snacks and beverages on campus for the upcoming academic year. School fees will be collected via internet bank transfer – with almost no schools accepting cash. It is an extraordinary victory for modernity to have almost the entire city of Mumbai’s schools go cashless. For students, already being digital savvy, it is a small step to completely remove cash from their day to day habits – but to have parents and teachers also embrace cashless is a remarkable achievement.
With the entire nation of India on the cusp of a huge economic leap forward – it is time that we in the West take notice and demand that our governments and central banks also do away with cash, without delay.