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SBI Clarifies Zero Charges Are Levied For Digital Transactions From Basic Savings Accounts

SBI in response to controversy said that it does not charge any transaction fees from its Basic Savings account customers for digital transactions such as UPI.



The State Bank of India in a statement on Tuesday, November 23, clarified that it does not charge any transaction fees from its Basic Savings Bank Deposit (BSBD) customers for digital transactions such as those using the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) or RuPay debit cards. This was stated in response to the recent digital transaction controversy. According to an ANI source, an IIT study found that SBI, India's largest lending institution, withheld Rs 164 crore from Jan Dhan account users between 2017 and September 2020.

Out of a total of 164 crore, only Rs 90 crore has been repaid to these account holders for transactions via UPI and Rupay cards. The bank received Rs 17.70 from each account holder during this time. In response to the allegations, the SBI stated that BSBD clients do not pay any fees for digital transactions, like as those involving the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) and RuPay debit cards. In regards to unpaid refunds for digital transactions, the bank stated that effective June 15, 2016, it introduced charges in the BC (Business Correspondent) channel beyond the first four withdrawals in BSBD (Basic Savings Bank Deposit) accounts, in accordance with RBI guidelines and with prior notice to customers.

SBI on Digital transaction charges

SBI went on to say that BSBD customers rarely need more than four withdrawals each month, and that if they do, they can do so for free at the branch. According to the bank, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) instructed banks to return charges received on or after January 1, 2020, resulting in a refund of Rs 90 crore to account holders. The statement read, "CBDT on 30.08.2020 advised Banks to refund charges collected, if any, on or after 01.01.2020 on digital transactions and not to impose charges on such future transactions. Accordingly, the Bank refunded charges of Rs. 90.20 crores to the customers recovered from 01.01.2020 to 14.09.2020. Bank is only charging beyond four free cash withdrawals in the BC channel, while there are no charges if digital channels are used. The objective is to promote digital transactions towards a 'less cash' economy." 

According to the bank, the State Bank of India (SBI) posted its highest quarterly net profit of Rs 7,627 crores in Quarter 2 of the Financial Year 2021-22, representing a 66.73 % year-on-year (YoY) rise. According to a press release from SBI, operating profit climbed 9.84 % year on year, rising from Rs 16,460 crores in Q2 FY 2020-21 to Rs 18,079 crores in Q2 FY 2021-22. "Fully provided Rs 7,418 crores due to change in family pension rules, even as regulator granted dispensation to amortise in 5 years," added the statement.

With inputs from ANI


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