GePG: The E-payment gateway for retired govt staff
Indian Government’s official account-keeper, the Controller General of Accounts (CGA) has developed a fully secured e-payment gateway for direct credit of dues into the accounts of beneficiaries using digitally signed electronic advice through the new system.
- Apart from revolutionizing payments to individual beneficiaries, the government’s epayment gateway (GePG), that would be linking 1.3 lakh agencies down to the level of panchayats—has been developed to capture all data on receipt, payments, borrowings and deficit real time.
- The E-payment gatway has been inaugurated by Pranab Mukherjee on October 31, and its application will become mandatory for all government departments and ministries from April 1, 2012.
- So, from April 1, 2012, the retired government employees don’t need to run from pillar to post to claim their post-retirement benefits anymore.
- Once an employee retires, all his / her benefits like gratuity and provident funds are likely to be credited to the account the next day, and the pension will be deposited from the next month.
How the system is working currently?
- Currently, paying units in central government use cheque, cash, demand draft for making payments to employees and vendors.
How the new system will work?
- GePG is a portal which enables the successful delivery of payment services from pay and accounts offices for online payment into beneficiaries’ accounts in a seamless manner under a secured environment.
- This gateway would serve as middleware between computerized payment and accounts application at pay and accounts offices and the core banking solution of the agency banks or RBI to facilitate paperless transaction, reducing the overall transaction cost.
How it would help the Government?
- The CGA says that the system is expected to save the government more than Rs. 5,000 crore on interest payments annually.
- This is because government will borrow Rs. 40,000 crore-Rs. 50,000 crore less every year due to availability of real time data.
- It will also help the Centre in more effectively channelizing plan expenditure on development schemes.
- The government spends nearly Rs. 4 lakh crore every year on 140 centrally sponsored plan schemes and over 800 central sector schemes along with state schemes and additional central assistance. The new payment gateway will help monitor the entire disbursement.
What are potential benefits?
The system is expected to bring in transparency and expedite direct payments from central paying units relating to subsidies to the user and consumers for fertilizer, kerosene and cooking gas — a declared objective of the government.