Signage for Airtel Payments Bank Ltd., operated by Bharti Airtel Ltd., is displayed outside a mobile accessories store in Bengaluru, India (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

Airtel Payments Bank Gets RBI, UIDAI Nod To Resume Taking New Customers

Airtel Payments Bank today said it has received requisite approvals from the Reserve Bank to begin taking in new customers. Additionally, the Aadhaar-issuing authority UIDAI has allowed it to use the 12-digit unique identification number-based e-KYC.

The development comes nearly seven months after Bharti Airtel Ltd. along with Airtel Payments Bank came under fire for allegedly opening payments bank accounts of its mobile subscribers without their consent, while LPG subsidy worth crores was deposited into these accounts.

RBI had, thereafter, directed Airtel Payments Bank not to on-board new customers while Aadhaar-issuing body Unique Identification Authority of India had suspended the electronic know-your-customer licence of both Bharti Airtel and its payments bank.

The company, on its part, had denied any wrongdoing and streamlined its processes to comply with the regulations.

UIDAI, in March this year, restored Bharti Airtel’s authorisation to conduct Aadhaar-based verification of its mobile subscribers, but did not lift the suspension on its payments banks’ e-KYC licence.

“Airtel Payments Bank has received requisite approvals from the Reserve Bank of India to start onboarding new customers,” a company statement said. The payments bank has also been permitted by the UIDAI to resume getting customers on board using Aadhaar based e-KYC.

“We thank the authorities for the approvals...the payments bank remains committed to the government’s vision of financial inclusion and banking for all,” the statement added.

A payments bank is like any other bank, but operates on a smaller scale without involving any credit risk.

Also read: RBI Slaps Rs 5 Crore Penalty On Airtel Payments Bank