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Airtel Payments Bank gets RBI Nod to Add New Customers, Can use e-KYC

Airtel Payments Bank, which was stopped by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) from getting new customers on board, received approvals from the central bank to add new accounts, the company said on Thursday.

Also, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) has allowed it to use the 12-digit Aadhaar-based e-KYC, the company said.

The payments bank ran into a controversy after it allegedly opened savings accounts for existing customers without their express permissions.

These accounts allegedly led to government LPG subsidies worth Rs 1.68 billion being transferred to Airtel Payments Bank accounts even as many of the customers weren’t aware of that.

“We thank the authorities for the approvals. We remain committed to the Government’s vision of financial inclusion and banking for all,” a spokesperson said.

In January, the bank was barred from getting new customers on board pending an RBI inquiry and a report on the same. Later, the Aadhaar-issuing body, UIDAI, had declined access to e-KYC to Airtel Payments Bank in a circular.

A government source had earlier told Business Standard that UIDAI will only look at reinstating the facility for Airtel Payments Bank after a report from the RBI on the alleged wrongdoings.

Airtel Payments Bank, which denies any wrongdoing, has more than 10 million customers and seeks to expand its presence in the hinterlands by converting mobile shops around the country into banking points for easy access for its customers. – Business Standard

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