Mobikwik CEO alleges BHIM for discrimination over cashbacks and incentives

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Everyone is pleased with the cashback offers from the government-sponsored UPI-enabled payments platform BHIM. We often see overwhelming responses from BHIM users on social media regarding such offers.

But, in the hindsight, private payments players such as Mobikwik, PhonePe, Paytm and other UPI-led apps have been not happy with it.

Raising its voice against the government-owned BHIM, Mobikwik who recently joined the NPCI-led payments umbrella – UPI has alleged that this could be a discriminatory move by the government.

Mobikwik’s co-founder and CEO Bipin Preet Singh targeted BHIM on social media saying that the incentive plan is meant for promotion and adoption of BHIM, but the incentives only go to BHIM app users or bank app users.

It essentially means that these cashback and incentive offers are not applicable for a non-bank app or third-party PSP such as Mobikwik, Google’s Tez, PhonePe, Paytm and others although they are running on the same UPI platform and connect with the same bank accounts.

“It’s incredible that both private and public sector bank apps get the benefit of Govt promotions but startup apps ( which follow the same level of compliance) & which are attracting much valuable FDI, creating new technology & thousands of new jobs are denied this opportunity”, wrote Singh on his blog post.

According to him, the government is funding installation of bank apps at the cost of non-bank apps whereas both are promoting the BHIM-UPI. He also urged the government to take notice and correct this anomaly in the interest of Digital India.

Meanwhile, the government has extended the cashback scheme for one more year starting from April 1, 2018. This is also a concern for private players because Prime Minister Modi himself is the brand ambassador of BHIM.

In fact, grabbing the largest share of UPI is a two way battle between government and private players. BHIM had been able to plot a good show in the past but recent NPCI data revealed that the government-sponsored app has witnessed a slow growth and remained flat in terms of transaction volume.

Mobikwik and FreeCharge are latecomers in this league so standing against mighty players will be a tough challenge indeed.

However, private players such as Paytm and PhonePe have emerged as the leader despite government’s aggressive push for BHIM.

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