New Delhi: A new electronic payment system, inaugurated Monday, will usher in transparency in the way ministries and various government departments pay their vendors and financial beneficiaries and will help in bringing down corruption, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said here.
'This e-payment system will reduce the citizen interface by eliminating the beneficiary dependency on government office and officials to hand over the cheque since the payments would be effected directly into their accounts,' Mukherjee said after inaugurating an electronic payment (e-payment) system here.
'A transparent payment trail would ensure that the entire payment process is trackable and delays can be monitored online. This would be a major initiative for good governance and would be an important tool in reducing corruption,' he added.
The e-payment system, devised by the Controller General of Accounts (CGA) will make transactions cashless and make payments online into beneficiaries' accounts in a seamless manner under a secure environment.
'The system covering all central government departments and ministries is expected to eliminate almost two crore cheques. When it becomes fully operational in civil ministries, defence and railways, it is expected to cover a total payment of over Rs.6 lakh crore,' he added.
The system will also expedite direct payments from various fund disbursing departments and agencies with respect to subsidies to users and consumers of fertiliser, kerosene and cooking gas.
The Finance Minister also said that the electronic payment systems are designed for automated processing and bank reconciliation, thereby reducing the costs of transactions and associated manual work in the involved public agencies, beneficiaries and banks.