Private sector HDFC Bank and mobile operator Vodafone India have recently partnered to provide mobile banking services in India. A pilot project will be implemented in Rajasthan, enabling low-income customers to go to a Vodafone counter in his or her village to open a mobile banking account. The payment system would allow customers to make cash deposits, withdraw cash, and transfer funds. Both an English and Hindi version are being developed.

Private sector lending major, HDFC Bank and telecom major Vodafone India have joined hands to start mobile banking operations in rural areas of the country with the aim of taking forward the aim of financial inclusion.

The two entities have chosen Chomu district in Rajastha to initiate their pilot drive for the country wide financial inclusion campaign using mobile banking.

The mobile banking was launched by deputy governor of Reserve Bank of India, Mr K C Chakrabarty yesterday.

Speaking on the launch, Mr Chakrabarty said, “It’s the upper echelons of society who are using mobile banking now. We want the poor also to benefit, especially those in remote villages.”

He said that he was happy that not only public sector lenders but also private sector lenders like HDFC Bank are taking stand towards carrying out the aim of financial inclusion in the country.

The customer now has to visit a Vodafone counter in his village from where he can set up a mobile bank account with HDFC Bank.

Cash deposit, withdrawal as well as fund transfer can be done by the customer using his mobile banking account.

Fund transfer through this facility would charge Rs 1.50 per Rs 100 approximately.

The facility has been presently launched in English but the Hindi version is said to come to practice in 45 days tenor.